Building the Tigh-Na-Mara Toy Drive

Guest Blog by Paul Drummond, Tigh-Na-Mara General Manager

Originally from Winnipeg, my career in the hotel industry has provided amazing opportunities for my family and I to work and live in many countries including Malaysia, Singapore, Egypt, United States and Canada.  While we have enjoyed all the experiences of living abroad for 15+ years, and would not trade those years in for anything, our eyes have been fully opened to realize how fortunate we are to live back in Canada.

My family and I moved to Parksville from Chicago in 2007 with the exciting opportunity to manage Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Spa Resort.  We had stayed here as guests in 1995 when living in Malaysia and couldn’t resist the opportunity to return, but this time call it home.

Our timing was a bit unfortunate as the recession hit the following year and running any business was more challenging than in the past.  Tigh-Na-Mara experienced one of its most devastating financial years in 2008 and we realized as a business, who had always supported our community, that we needed to step up and do something special.

We realized many more families were struggling and having challenges meeting their monthly bills, retirees had lost significant amounts of their investment savings and with the Christmas holidays around the corner, we were in a position to create something that would help relieve a bit of pressure from the season and help those who were struggling have something under the tree on Christmas morning.  The Tigh-Na-Mara Toy Drive Breakfast was born.

Now that we had the idea, we needed to find an organization that would be able to distribute what we hoped to collect.  That is when I was introduced to the District 69 Society of Organized Services (SOS).  Currently in our 13 years of hosting the annual Toy Drive, our relationship has continued to grow beyond one of just distribution.

Our understanding of the services SOS provides our community, and their continual effort to create new programs and services to fill voids other organizations and government programs don’t address, is incredible.  As a business which employs over 300 people, I know firsthand of many of our team members who have been supported in a variety of ways through the programs run by SOS.

We are so fortunate to have an organization like SOS in our community and even though personally, neither my family or I have needed access to their programs, we know many community members and friends who have needed their support.  With 30+ programs helping our community, Tigh-Na-Mara will continue it’s support where we can as their existence benefits us all.

Thank you to all the staff and volunteers at Society of Organized Services for what you do and continually supporting all who need assistance in our community!

Paul Drummond
General Manager
Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Spa Resort & Conference Centre