Vi Van Allen
I first became involved with L.E.S.S. in 1996 when I volunteered to be the Melfort and Area Contact Person. The nearest contact at that time was Prince Albert, and I had earlier attended an AGM there. This followed my sister-in-law being diagnosed with SLE, which I knew absolutely nothing about but felt I had to learn. I soon began to know some of the people involved with L.E.S.S. and continued to attend meetings. In 1999 the Secretarial position became vacant when Muriel Anderson relocated, and having worked as a Secretary for many years in Saskatoon, Regina and Melfort, I offered to take the minutes. Of course that lead to election and I formally took over as Recording Secretary in 2000 and still enjoy that position.
For the past three years I have held Craft & Baking Sales at the Melfort Mall in conjunction with Lupus Awareness Month, and with the support of other L.E.S.S. members and many good friends here in Melfort we have raised a substantial amount of money as well as raised awareness regarding lupus. There will in fact be such a Craft Sale on Thursday, October 30th and donations of craft items and/or baking are most welcome.
In 2001 I decided I could be of use to L.E.S.S. by raising funds through the local Bingo Association and the Board agreed we should give it a try; with that encouragement I obtained a Gaming License and soon learned the ropes of running a Bingo/Breakopen event. We have sponsored at least one Bingo per month since July of 2001 (our regular night is the 28th of each month but we sometimes are awarded additional nights if another sponsor cancels) and hope to continue this worthwhile fundraiser. So if you or your friends are in Melfort on the 28th of any month, stop in at the Bonanza Bingo Hall on Saskatchewan Avenue, I'd be happy to see you!
It has been said that "whole families suffer from the same disease even though only one of them has it." So even though I don't have lupus, I am very aware of its dangers and its effects on family members. I firmly believe that those of us with good health should spend some of our time and talents in ways that help those less fortunate. I would encourage other family members to take an interest in the activities of the Lupus Society; if you don't have the time or don't feel you can take on an office, come to the meetings anyway, get to know your Board and learn what we are doing on your behalf and also what you can do to assist us. We need you in our organization.
*Update* - The 2006 Craft/Bake sale will be Thursday, October 26th at the Melfort Mall. Unfortunately LESS no longer sponsors Bingos in Melfort.