Timmy's Only Delivery latest recipient of $1,000 prize
Calgary is truly an awesome place, or at least Lori Stewart thinks so – she founded Awesome Calgary.
Originating in Boston, many Awesome foundations around the world provide $1000 grants to projects and their creators, and Awesome Calgary has now joined their ranks.
"Our three core tenants are that people are basically awesome, that awesome ideas should be rewarded and that together, we can all do more than any of us can individually," Stewart says.
Stewart, along with 12 other trustees, donates $100 each month towards the monthly grant; alittle adds up to a lot.
Every month, Awesome Calgary encourages people to submit their ideas and projects. At the end of each month, the foundation hosts a Pitch 'n' Party where the four best ideas are presented and the best pitch can win $1,000.
The best part – there are no strings attached to the prize; the winners can do whatever they want with the money.
Since giving is a group effort, it was easy for trustee Reg Tiangha to get involved with the foundation.
Although Tiangha never thought he could be a philanthropist, he soon realized it wasn't a hard thing to do.
"I always thought philanthropy was for rich people," Tiangha says. "But I realized that I can give back and didn't need to be rich. That's why the power of many is stronger than just the power of one."
For the founders of Timmy's Only Delivery, this prize money they won last month could be used for marketing their business and launching their company to success.
On Feb. 23, Timmy's Only Delivery was one of the two winners at Awesome Calgary's Pitch 'n' Party for February. The trustees decided that it was a special night, and to use extra money saved to announce two winners instead of just the usual one.
Both winners, Timmy's Only Delivery and Gumsphere 300 – a travelling road show with Alberta bands and artists – were each given $1,000 for their ideas.
Created by Tim Barber and Chris Morris, Timmy's Only delivers coffee, snacks and lunches to downtown businesses for a nominal fee.
"We provide a service to businesspeople who cannot leave the office," Morris says.
Morris says he starts taking orders from 6:30 a.m. and will deliver until 5:30 p.m. As soon as the orders come in, Morris goes and waits in lines for coffees, places coffees in a thermal bag and walks to the offices for delivery. He walks all day – back and forth on the streets – to the coffee shops and to the business offices.
Despite all the walking, Morris says he loves what he does. With such dedication to the job, it's hard to believe that both Morris and Barber were once homeless, living on the same streets that Morris walks up and down every day while delivering coffee.
With perseverance, both Morris and Barber found their way off the streets and are living in housing.
Regular customer Petra Hodgetts appreciates the service. Working by herself at Your Print & Copy Solutions, Hodgetts cannot take a coffee or lunch break for fear of losing customers.
"I have been using Timmy's Only since they first started," she says. "It's a concept that nobody has thought of."
Both businesses have found a way to work with each other. While Hodgetts uses Timmy's Only to deliver her coffee and lunches, Timmy's Only uses Hodgetts' business to print their business cards.
Previous Awesome Calgary Winners:
Source: Awesome Calgary
"We help each other out," Hodgetts says. "That's what businesses do."
As part of their business plan, Barber and Morris hope to expand their business by hiring homeless people.
"I want to give back to where I came from," says Barber. "I'll never forget where I came from."
To inquire about Timmy's Only Delivery, phone 403-465-5232.
For more information about Awesome Calgary, visit the website at www.awesomecalgary.org
- By CORINNE SATO