March 17th, 2012 was a very important day for me. At the time, I hoped that what I was about to start would help to eliminate preventable blindness and restore sight. I had no idea that my own life would be changed in countless ways. Last year, on St. Patrick’s Day, I held my first Dough for $$$Dough$$$ workshop. In my small kitchen I taught four friends how to bake artisan bread. These friends had graciously agreed to be my guinea pigs as I worked out the kinks in my workshop delivery. I was ever so grateful to these friends when they went online to my giving page to donate to Seva Canada in return for my teaching them how to make artisan bread. It was exciting to see my thermometer on my Seva Giving Page on the website go up!
I think that it is time for me to send all of you an update to let you know where things stand with Dough for $$$Dough$$$. Here is the snapshot version. To date I have held 24 workshops. I have had 91 bakers come through my kitchen. The current thermometer reading is $4,552.00! I have two more confirmed bookings for April and I know of at least a couple more workshops that will happen later this spring.
My heart is filled with amazement, gratitude, humility and joy. I never in a million years would have thought that my workshop idea would take off the way it has. To all of you who have participated and donated to Seva, saying “thank you” simply doesn’t seem adequate. I’ve had so much fun with all of you. I’ve been able to spend time with old friends and make new friends. We’ve shared a lot of laughter. Sometimes we have shed some tears. No, the tears haven’t been because the bread didn’t turn out. The tears sometimes made an appearance while we talked about Seva Canada’s success stories. Hearts cannot help but be touched by the sight story postcards that make an appearance at each of the workshops.
Dough for $$$Dough$$$ has been and continues to be a wonderful adventure. I’ve been fortunate to have made the long-distance acquaintance of the Seva staff and some of the Seva board members. Maybe someday they will make their way to Winnipeg to bake with me. I would love that. All of them have been enthusiastic supporters of my fundraising efforts. The people who have come to workshops have delighted me with their enthusiasm too. Here is a sample of those who have come through my kitchen: - Two sets of three-generation mother-daughter bakers - Former co-workers who are still in my corner supporting me - Sisters - Friends I’ve made through my work in teaching English as an Additional Language - Former ECE students whom I now count as friends - Friends who brought their lifelong friends (frightening that two of these friends-of-friends were a baker and a chef!) - Two women from France (Who knew my workshop would be on a “what to do while in Manitoba” list! What was I going to teach women from France about bread?!!!) - A “sangha” of bakers from my meditation group - A niece - Friends that I’ve made through volunteering with newcomers to Canada I have had several repeat participants who have brought a group (or two) of their friends to learn how to make artisan bread.
I am so grateful to all of you. I’m so very glad that you had so much fun baking with me the first time that you came back for a second (or a third) workshop. Friends like that…….priceless. Best of all, together we have had a tremendous, positive impact on the lives of individuals and their families. In the words of Dr. Marty Spencer, a Seva volunteer, “Does it get any better?” Peace, Pat Seva Donor