HMCS Vancouver defies NDWCC fundraising expectations

HMCS Vancouver

Master Sailor Rafer Duhme, HMCS Vancouver NDWCC Representative. Photo illustration.

Peter Mallett, Staff Writer — The same factors that dented the efforts of all charitable fundraising across the country did not stop HMCS Vancouver from going above and beyond for the Base’s charitable initiative.

The 240-strong crew raised almost $8,000 for the National Defence Workplace Charitable Campaign (NDWCC) while deployed on Operations Projection and Neon. The Halifax-class frigate returned from its 173-day deployment to Asia-Pacific on Dec. 5.

“I am absolutely impressed they raised such a large amount of money,” said Matt Carlson Projects Officer at Base Public Affairs and Civilian Team Lead of Esquimalt’s NDWCC. “It shows the ship’s company’s high degree of teamwork and dedication.”

Vancouver’s contribution represents over seven per cent of the total NDWCC monies raised at the Base. The campaign total currently sits at approximately $115,000.

Master Sailor (MS) Rafer Duhme, HMCS Vancouver NDWCC Ambassador, said most of the money was collected in the ship’s final weeks of deployment.

“We started in November [2022] after the operational phase of our deployment was complete,” MS Duhme said. “Our NDWCC team did a great job.”

MS Duhme became NDWCC rep in 2017. He said Vancouver raised a substantial sum because of interactive events with the crew.

The most popular fundraiser was a RAS (Replenishment at Sea) Music Raffle, where members played music on the ship’s sound system after refuelling operations. Other fun activities included a Rev Pool draw where the crew used the shafts of the ship’s engine to determine a winner, a Chase the Ace card game, and a First Kiss raffle.

Approximately $4,000 of the fundraising sum will go to the ship’s charity Honour House. Honour House is a home-away-from-home for First Responders, Canadian Armed Forces members and their families undergoing medical treatment in Vancouver.

While most NDWCC fundraising events ended in December, Unit fundraising and personal NDWCC donations can still be made through e-transfers and cash drop-offs to Carlson’s office in Base Public Affairs. Please connect with your NDWCC Unit Rep Ambassador for more information.

The Base Commander’s Office and United Way of Greater Victoria officials will announce the final NDWCC campaign total during a cheque presentation ceremony in March.

The most successful fundraising events at the Base this year included:

  • The NDWCC campaign kick-off Pancake Breakfast;
  • Two separate Bring Your Dog to Work Day events;
  • Dress with a Difference Days, where military personnel wore civilian clothing;
  • An oil change and tire swap event organized by TEME (Transport Electrical and Mechanical Engineering);
  • The Hutchinson Heave event, in which units raised NDWCC funds to get the honour of heaving Base Commander Capt(N) J. Jeffrey Hutchinson into the harbour;

Individual units also organized raffles, soup days, bake sales and similar events.


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