Thanks to a generous donation from the Morris and District Chamber of Commerce, the Morris and Area Cheer Board delivered an added surprise to families for the holidays.

Chamber president, Cheryl Demarcke, says they were thrilled to be able to provide $4,400 in Chamber Bucks to the Cheer Board as a COVID-related benefit.

“These Chamber Bucks were included in all of the Christmas hampers this year. Everybody that received a Christmas hamper received Chamber Bucks to spend on local merchandise in the community," said Demarcke. "This is the largest donation to the cheer board that the Morris and District Chamber of Commerce has ever done. This was possible because of a federal holiday support grant that came through from the Manitoba Chamber of Commerce.”

To her knowledge, Demarcke says it’s the first time hampers have included the vouchers.

“The cheer hampers are always quite bountiful, but we know that the hampers don't always include everything somebody needs. So, we were pretty excited that local community people could go to any of our retail and services here in Morris and actually surrounding areas, including St. Jean, Letellier, St. Joseph and Lowe Farm. Those people can kind of pick what they want.”

The Chamber sees it as a win-win-win.

“We're supporting the cheer board, which is supporting families in need, and in turn they're also going to support our local businesses. It’s fantastic!” says Demarcke.

“At this time of the year our local businesses really really need the help. It's been a tough couple of years for small business owners and big business owners in Morris and that area.”

According to the Morris and Area Cheer Board’s Facebook page, more than 90 hampers were delivered to families in and around the Morris Area this year.