Nelson’s Coldest Night of the Year was, as usual, a multi-generational event. Photo: Tyler Harper

52,000 reasons to walk in the cold

Nelson CARES raises over $52,000 at Coldest Night fundraiser

Submitted by Nelson CARES

On Saturday evening more than 300 Nelsonites turned out to walk with the Nelson CARES Society through the sixth annual Coldest Night of the Year (CNOY) fundraising event. They were supported by 80-plus volunteers.

They gathered at Central Wildflower School, donned their CNOY 2020 toques, and hit the streets to show their support for their less fortunate neighbours and some of the most vulnerable in this community.

Coldest Night of the Year is a national fundraiser that took place on Feb. 22 in 144 cities and towns across Canada. Nelson has always stepped up in a big way for a small town. Nationally, we rank 36th for money raised beating much larger cities like Kelowna, Burlington, and Edmonton.

Here in Nelson, we raised $52,778.70 so far this year. This is nothing short of amazing and that number will continue to grow. Donations are still being accepted until the end of March. The funds raised go to support the Ready for Home program that works with those who have experienced homelessness to find and keep housing.

“Driving the route last night and seeing all those white toques parading down the street made me so happy,” says CNOY event coordinator Stephanie Myers. “I truly can’t express how much I appreciate all the work that folks put into this event. Everything from the actual fundraising and asking their friends and family to support them, to setting up tables and serving hot chocolate at rest stops. I feel just like the Grinch did when his heart grew three sizes bigger. Thank you, Nelson. You definitely rock!”

Nelson-Creston MLA Michelle Mungall has been a huge supporter of the work Nelson CARES does once again made a generous donation this year. She is matching the total of all the CNOY jar donations around town to a minimum of $1000.

“I want to thank all of the people involved with CNOY for the amazing work they have done to raise funds for the much-needed housing and supports for people in our community,” Mungall says.

Nelson CARES would like to thank everyone who helped out with this year to make this event and fundraising so spectacular. The team captains, the walkers, the sponsors, the donors, the numerous businesses that hosted donation jars, our two venue locations, the City of Nelson, locations who hosted community tables, our generous rest stop hosts, and the 80-plus volunteers.

People donated their Saturday evening to stand on a dark street corner to cheer on the walkers as they head to a warm bowl of chilli at St Joseph School.

Nelson CARES also sends a massive thank you to the Selkirk College Culinary Assistance Program and their instructor, Lita Moth, for taking the lead with making enough chili for 500 people along with cornbread muffins and cookies.

For more information about the CNOY fundraiser or to make a donation, please visit or contact CNOY coordinator Stephanie Myers, 250-505-7410 or

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