There’ll be a lot of cars scavenging on our streets

Manuel is an orphan who now lives at the El Hogar mission in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. On Saturday, Nov. 16 Manuel will “ride” in a car – or at least his framed picture will— as part of a large fundraising event in and around Leaside.

Held in support of El Hogar Projects Canada, the event is a car rally with stops for “secret tasks,” silent auction and dinner.

It expects to raise $30,000 for El Hogar, which provides abandoned and hopelessly poor children in Honduras a loving home and education.

Each car will get a map of the mostly secret stops. “For example,” says Brenda French, a Donegall Dr. resident on the planning committee, “one is at Tremblett’s valu-mart on Bayview, another at the Amsterdam Brewery; we’ve even included the Leaside Public Library.”

The rally is organized into 50 teams of four people, who each pay $50 to take part. They start their route around 3 p.m. and accumulate points when they complete various tasks along the way.

After the rally they’ll enjoy a totally sponsored dinner and silent auction with a jazz musician entertaining at Leaside United Church.

“Every penny goes to the children,” says French, who is working with neighbour and friend Jenn Meeker on the silent auction prizes. Both French and Meeker have participated in several mission teams that work at the El Hogar site.

“Everyone’s been busy planning the route in and around the community, and lining up participation from generous Leaside merchants,” says French. “The photo of one of the children will go in every car so we remember what we’re doing this for.”

Almost all those working on the event are from Leaside.  Some, like Margo Mingay, of Bennington Heights, the chair of the planning committee, have been involved with the mission for years. Mingay was recently appointed president of EL Hogar Mission Canada.

Other committee members, like Doug McKenzie, Bill Meeker, Lissa Ellesmere, Neal Kelly and Darryl Bunt, have been moved by what they’ve seen after visiting the centre as part of a volunteer mission team.