On Wednesday, May 15, 2019, over 150 people gathered at the Danish Canadian Club for Momentum’s Annual Celebration and General Meeting. It was a joy-filled afternoon where guests mingled and connected with other community members while partaking in delicious food from the Danish Canadian Club and Momentum’s own business graduates.
It was fitting that Ayla Stephen, our Business Development Assistant who first meets anyone interested in Momentum’s Self-Employment programs, was our emcee. The event was our opportunity to honour those who have participated in our programs, donated to our work, volunteered in numerous capacities, partnered with us, or worked for the organization – in short, there are a lot of people who have contributed to Momentum’s achievements in the community!
After another strong year of financially stewarding the resources entrusted to us, we elected board directors for the coming year and introduced special resolutions. We celebrated and thanked Gail Boehm who has served on Momentum’s Board of Directors for ten years, ensuring that we have had excellent governance during that time.
We introduced the 2018 Annual Report and highlighted our first effort at co-creating the publication with Momentum’s special group of alumni volunteers called the Participant Ambassadors with much appreciation to Nicole Bradford, Caleb Skinner, and Chris Kemp for their invaluable work in writing and designing content. Our Executive Director, Jeff Loomis, then led into the oral reporting component of the Annual Report that reflects our commitment to Indigenous engagement and respect for oral traditions along with three things that we left out of the Annual Report. These included:
- Jag’s story, a Momentum graduate who now has a flourishing career in the automotive industry;
- Momentum’s work in exponentially scaling up our impact by training other organizations to deliver our programs and partnering with organizations like the City of Calgary, United Way, and Cenovus; and,
- Tim’s reference letter for Jason de Leeuw from Father & Sons Small Engine Repair. In the letter, Tim shared how much he has richly benefited from Jason’s skills training and more importantly, Jason’s mentorship and belief in Tim’s bright future. Two days before the AGM, we discovered that Global News featured Jason, a Thrive graduate, on TV!
Hearing these inspirational stories secondhand from Jeff only whetted our appetite to hear firsthand from Pansie Hudson, a Momentum graduate who now owns and operates Hudson Spirit Cake out of Granary Road Market. Audience members asked Jeff and Pansie questions during the Question and Answer period, which we will continue to answer on our blog in coming months. Finally, we capped off the celebration with opportunities for guests to sign our community guest book and have their pictures taken by our Community Initiatives staff in Thrive and Aspire. You can find those pictures below.
Did you miss the celebration? Not to worry! Here is your chance to relive the experience by listening to the music that our Participant Ambassadors selected as their “Motivational Playlist” and by visiting some of the Momentum graduates who provided us with sweet and savoury treats: Arepas Ranch, Caribbean Delights 2 Go, ETAPSICE, Hudson Spirit Cake, Miral’s Kitchen, and The Cupcake Parlour. This is just another benefit to being part of the Momentum community: exposure to amazing small businesses owners in Calgary!