Written by MayBell Developments – January 30th, 2024
We believe that each day, month, and year of the maturation of MayBell Developments has inherent value. Even ‘setbacks’ have been learning experiences and examples of how God’s time is His own and immeasurably wiser than our projections. And so, we trust in these timelines, giving the progress made in 2023 its rightful attention to help where we have come to inform us in how we should go.
“Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” – Philippians 4:9
Our fresh Executive Director role hit the ground running: overseeing our annual fundraiser, getting immersed in plans for fund development, and exploring options for policy development for Lilium Village.
We were excited to cheer on the creating portion of our Knit-a-thon fundraiser throughout January.
The physical construction of Lilium Village Childcare continued well. There was also exciting progress for program delivery, with the announcement of the hiring of a childcare director mid-month.
The plans for Lilium Village were completed and submitted to the city of Regina for permits. We quickly received a response outlining the need for some application revisions and went back to the drawing board.
The Knit-a-Thon closed at the beginning of February. We boasted the creation of 643 toques, 44 scarves, and 71 pairs of mittens, which were donated to the Mackenzie Infant Care Center, Transition House, Soul’s Harbour Rescue Mission, and Sacred Heart Community School. We successfully raised $1892 for our Lilium Village Build Project.
Mid-month we completed the hiring of Lin Zhang as the Childcare Director for Lilium Village Childcare. With the anticipated expansion, we engaged the services of Faith Landsdell with Straight Arrow Bookkeeping.
Near the close of the month, we celebrated the graduation of two participants from our Faith & Finances program.
The LV Childcare construction progress hit some big visual milestones, with the drywall going up and bringing a wave of excitement. Our childcare waitlist opened to the public this month. The interest was exceptionally high, filling the spaces in only 3 days!
We were blessed to hold our Annual General Meeting in our partially renovated office space, with the highest attendance at our AGM to date.
We had hoped to break ground on the Lilium Village housing development in the fall of 2023. We celebrate the patience of our committed in-trade partners thus far: Fries Tallman, Sterling Plumbing & Heating, TressTech Electric, Everflow Eaves & Exteriors, CNG Stone, and Queen City Excavating.
The dedicated work of our board members brought the necessary amendments of the Lilium Village Duplex permits to completion, and they were re-submitted to the City of Regina.
The renovations of the Lilium Village Childcare Center, and the community center space for MayBell Developments’ programming, are finally complete. To get to know our Heritage Area neighbours, we shifted from our usual spring Faith & Finances programming and instead opened our doors through ‘Community Nights’ on Wednesday evenings.
Receiving a response that our duplex permit applications required further amendments, we collaborated once again with Robinson Residential to complete the revisions required.
We signed on as an official charity for the Queen City Marathon this month, with our Executive Director running the 10k to raise funds for our project.
Throughout the early/late spring, numerous grant applications were maintained. Although not successful with established financial support, good conversations and connections were being made.
Our community nights continued, and we were blessed by the provision of food to share with our neighbours by volunteers with Hillsdale Baptist Church. The power of sharing a meal cannot be underestimated.
Some additional visual transformation took place, with landscape projects for the exterior of Lilium Village Childcare being accomplished.
We shifted our advertising voice from being a small drop in the big stream of CKRM, and a big splash in the new-to-Regina waters of United Christian Broadcasting (UCB 95.9).
Mid-month we hosted our final Community Night. With the gracious sponsorship of food and drinks by FreshCo, we offered barbeque, a bouncy castle, and balloon-animal making to our community members. It was a wonderful evening in which we happily ran out of food quickly, running out to get more to share with new community friends.
Although our calendars shifted and accommodated to virtual meetings, our staff and board members stayed in touch to maintain progress of our goals. We were also able to join the Heritage Community Association for the community clean-up at the end of the month. Thanks, HCA, the efforts of the neighborhood were such a lovely refresh for the area, including our overgrown parking lot!
By mid-August, all 6 permits for the Lilium Village duplexes were approved. Praise God!
With a refreshed focus on program delivery and new friends from our community nights, we reached out to contacts to engage with Faith & Finances volunteers and potential participants and scheduled our first session for September 6th.
The beginning of the month was busy, with the Queen City Marathon taking place on September 10. We met many lovely faces at our table at the Runner’s Expo, and our Executive Director was able to complete her 10k on race day Sunday. A huge thank you to all those who supported us. We were able to raise our goal amount of $1000!
We explored some ways to give the frontage of our buildings a bit of a ‘facelift’, and to differentiate between our office and childcare center entrances. Special thanks to Sharp Signs & Graphics for their cost and time-efficient work!
September is a month heavy with grant deadlines, and much of the month was dedicated to drafting applications.
As the fall closed in and timelines were not feasible for potential excavating partners, it became apparent that the build timeline needed to extend to the spring of 2024.
We began formally laying out ideas for our 3rd annual Knit-a-thon, brainstorming a ‘kick-off’ event of an in-person knitting/crocheting marathon. The event was once again sponsored by the wonderful people at Nychuk & Company and Yarn Over.
Throughout 2023 we built a connection with Gwen Dueck. Gwen’s expertise in policy development appeared to be a great fit. It was in October that we were able to narrow down the scope of our budget and engage in a proposal for services. Michelle had the privilege of travelling to Saskatoon to meet Gwen in person and to tour Hope Restored: an organization supporting services of human trafficking for which Gwen is on the Board of Directors.
Faith & Finances continued with 6 leaders, 4 allies, and 2 facilitators, and the weeks of relationship-building went very well. We again were grateful for the food provisions by various volunteers from Hillsdale Baptist Church. We have found that sharing a meal makes a big difference in building relationships across socioeconomic lines!
Our City Housing Incentive Program approval was extended to February 2025, and an application was made for an additional $50,000 through the Intensification Incentive Program at the close of this month.
We opened our Knit-a-thon registration for the middle of this month and were overwhelmed by the generosity of the connections we made for prize basket donations. We live in a generous community!
The first anniversary of our Executive Director was a great way to start this month. We were also blessed to celebrate our Faith & Finances graduates that week with a wonderful supper catered by Nicky’s Café. It was a joy to celebrate our five graduates with whom we had built some special relationships and cherish all we had learnt together.
Our daily sponsor videos for our Knit-a-thon donations took over our socials, and we were happy to highlight the generous donations made.
As a highlight to celebrate going into the Christmas season, we were excited to hear that our Intensification Incentive application was approved! It was on this win that we continued our funding focus for our capital project, grateful for the $350,000 total support that the city has committed.
The year looked different than we anticipated, as they often do, but a reflection reminds us that He continues to sustain us. And fills us with gratitude for the partners whose faith in our vision strengthened us to continue month by month. We praise God for all His provisions and joyously anticipate big things in 2024.
Get Articles, News, and Resources delivered right to your inbox.