Sandra Hession loves the activity of canning and she also loves selling things. For seven years she has combined these two passions to raise thousands of dollars for TEMBO. In 2018 alone, she raised thousands of dollars for TEMBO by selling her pickles, jams, relishes and cranberry sauce at fundraising events. Sandra runs ”Canning for a Cause” as a business with the upfront objective of profits going towards helping TEMBO. A retired educational bookseller, Sandra uses her business skills to develop good relationships with producers who sell produce to her at discount prices and to identify venues where she can sell the preserves.
Sandra thinks that there is a big market for home canned products. “People enjoy consumable things and they like that most of the ingredients are local. Most importantly, they love that they are contributing to a good cause.” Many of her customers buy her preserves and give them as gifts. They often request TEMBO promotional flyers so that they can include the TEMBO story with the gift.
At key times of the year, Sandra is a very busy person. With the bounty in the Fall, she is busy making pickles and relishes. At Christmas time every year, she sells her cranberries and sauce at Lady Fatima Church where this past December, she raised $1100 in one day. If she sees a deal on produce, she snaps it up and preserves it. For example, in January, she bought 100 pounds of beets and canned them.
Why does she put so much effort into this endeavour? “I love canning and I love the opportunity to use the business skills that I developed in my career. “And,” she adds, “doing something I love for a good cause magnifies the enjoyment.” Doesn’t it tie up too much time? “I don’t keep track of the hours, only the dollars that I am raising!”