It took ten years to form the Woolwich Kin Club, but that was not because we didn’t know what we were doing, we were just very busy ‘doing’. Period. Our club started with an event that just kept growing each and every year. Our event got to the size that we needed to consider joining forces with some ‘Pros’.
Our main event is the ‘Family Fun Weekend’, once called the ‘Family Camping Weekend’ and then before that, the ‘Big Person, Little Person Canoe Trip’ which was started by Bill McBay in 2000.
In 1999, Bill had a weekend of camping and good times with his son, father-in-law and brother-in-law at West Montrose Family Campground. It was such a great weekend, that the next year he started the event and had 10 father son/daughter pairings canoeing down the Grand River. Bill had collected enough money from everyone to pay for two days of canoeing.
When the second day of canoeing was cancelled due to weather, there was money left over to split up. It was decided that instead of giving everyone their money back, they would donate it to Big Brothers Big Sisters of KW. The next year’s event was planned with a a charitable donation component in mind.
Since it’s inception the event has gone through many changes. A full planning committee was created, the name was changed (twice) to better reflect the event, our website was launched, a FUN Casino night was added and in 2008 a Car Show & Shine. In 2009 a full scale Carnival was added and it continued to grow to what you see today.
The group of individuals that have planned this event in the past are just that, a group of individuals. Up until 2010 when they formed the Woolwich Kin Club, they were not members of a service club, church or charity. Simply a group of dedicated individuals that shared the same passion for camping, good times and working towards the common goal of raising money to help those people in the community that are less fortunate. Thanks to the support of Kin members and our charter sponsor, the Cambridge (Preston) Kinsmen Club, we have been able to bring this group of dedicated individuals together as an officially united group, which enables us to give member benefits to them in return.
In 2007 the planning committee at the time decided it was time to share the wealth. Keeping with the focus of providing funds for children less fortunate, it was decided to start a relationship with Women’s Crisis Services of Waterloo Region (WCSWR). In 2008, the WCSWR started a $8,500,000 capital campaign to rebuild Anselma House. The planning committee of the Family Fun Weekend signed on to raise $125,000 over five years.
The Family Fun Weekend has become a large part of the lives of the families that attend it, plan it and of course those families affected by family violence who are the benefactors of the event.
The Woolwich Kin Club is a member club of Kin Canada. Kin Canada, the Association of Kinsmen, Kinette and Kin clubs, is proud to be an all-Canadian service organization made up of outstanding community volunteers. From coast to coast, members are enhancing quality of life in their communities by promoting service, fellowship, positive values and national pride. The Association boasts a proud 90-year history dedicated to fostering lifelong friendships while “Serving the Community’s Greatest Need.” Since its inception, Kinsmen and Kinettes have raised over $1 Billion for the people of Canada, and have fostered a strong support relationship with the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, raising over $36 million since the 1960s. Being a part of Kin Canada is the opportunity of a lifetime that provides members with personal growth, professional training & networking, a 7000-member “family” that extends from coast to coast, and lifelong friendships; not to mention, wonderful memories you’ll want to tell to many generations to come.