A fundraiser held on Wednesday, Dec. 11 for 10-year-old Cranbrook resident Olivia Potorti was a massive success, bringing in over $17,000 in cash and gifts raised for her and her family.
Olivia was diagnosed with an extremely rare form of leukemia in October. Only one other child in Canada has the same form of the disease.
READ MORE: Fundraiser organized for Olivia Potorti
A group of local women heard about this devastating story, they organized a fundraiser at Soulfood, sending out over 200 emails and getting countless individuals and business owners on board for their event, which they called Love for Olive.
A total of over 40 local businesses lent their support in a multitude of ways; some matching ticket sales, others contributing items for an online silent auction, others donating cash.
Some of the memorable moments, according to a press release from the event’s organizers, included a donation of $70 from Olivia’s best friend, who raised funds for her friend and even shaved her head in an incredible moving show of support.
Perhaps the most touching moment of the night, according to the release, was when the family gathered together to have a FaceTime call with Olivia and her mom, who were unable to attend the event as they were away for treatment.
Cranbrook Flooring, Sandor Rentals, Charbonneau Holdings and Wildhorse Surgical each presented cheques to the family, after they agreed to match ticket sales, for a total of $3000.
Arch design Cabinetry presented the family with a top of the line laptop in order to allow Olivia to do her homework while away in Calgary getting treatment.
Miles, Zimmer and Associates announced at the event that they will be donating all fees collected for notarization services up until March 1, 2020. They raised $500 for the Potorti family in the first week alone.
A group of locals also participated in a fashion show featuring heartwarming signs of support for Olivia. Jennifer Mouly, owner of Velvet Life fashion and organizer of the fashion show, presented a toque she created featuring an olive in the shape of a heart. These sold fast, with 40 going in minutes and all funds going directly to the family.
At the time of writing the GoFundMe for Olivia has reached a total of $30,107 dollars. You can make a donation here.
1. Olivia’s grandmother, father, aunt and uncle embrace one another in an emotional moment, while FaceTiming Olive. Photo Credit: Stephanie Moore, Photographer.
2. Young supporters of Olive strut forward during the fashion show, sharing a message of love and support for Olive, while dawning the Love for Olive toques. Photo Credit: Stephanie Moore, Photographer.
3. Jessica, Shelby and Laura, of Wild Honey, perform for the crowd, while sporting Love for Olive toques. Photo Credit: Stephanie Moore, Photographer.
The full list of businesses who have supported this cause are as follows:
Cranbrook Flooring Sandor Rentals Charbonneau Holdings Wildhorse Surgical Velvet Life
Brook Public Relations & Social Media
M & K Plumbing
John Seiga, Sound Manager
Olive Me Handmade
Zen Mountain Float
Mud Frogs Studio
Portable Sawmill Services
Jo McKinstrie Real Estate Agent, Royal Lepage East Kootenay Mallory’s by Scott Mallory
Poppy & Clover
Lane & Meadow
OTG Power Solutions
Kootenay Canine Adventures
Photos by Frida
Arch Allure Microblading
The Bedroom Furniture Galleries
Kootenay Life Cycle
Top Crop Garden, Farm & Pet
Mud Frogs Studio
Miles, Zimmer & Associates
Mallory’s by Scott Mallory