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Donor Community

Donor Appeal: A letter to RRC alumni from Riva Harrison

May 6, 2020

Dear fellow alumni,

Red River College students need our help. I wanted to share why I chose to donate to the RRC COVID-19 Emergency Student Support Fund – and hope that my story will encourage you to do the same.

With the support of some very generous donors – including corporate partners, RRC alumni, staff and community members – the fund has quickly grown to over $300,000 and the College has been able to help more than 335 students who have been financially impacted by COVID-19.

But there are hundreds of students who still need our support – and that is why I’m asking for your help.

The pandemic has hit students particularly hard as the part-time jobs they rely on to cover rent and food costs are the type of jobs that were first to be reduced as a result of social distancing measures. While the economy is starting to re-open, it will be months before many of these jobs return.

As an RRC employee, I am in a unique position to see what our students are going through. Many of them live alone and don’t have family to turn to for support. Some are from out of town, or even out of country, and don’t have established support networks. Others are single parents trying to juggle course work, child care and job loss.

Every day students are making the choice between paying rent and putting food on the table for their family.

I donated to the fund as a proud RRC alumni member, a graduate of Creative Communications – and I would not be where I am today if it were not for my education at RRC. I am forever grateful for the skills I learned some 30 years ago. Without question, what I learned helped me establish myself throughout my career, first in journalism and later in strategic communications.

Financial stress places a heavy burden on students and without our help there are some who will fall through the cracks and not realize their potential.

As a lifelong Manitoban, I run into proud RRC alumni on a daily basis in virtually every industry. We are one of the most important engines that drives our economy. And we will be even more essential to the growth and prosperity of our community as we rebuild post COVID-19.

Manitoba needs RRC grads.

RRC helped launched my career and put me in a position to give back to a student in need. Please consider doing the same – no donation is too small as we work together to rise to the challenges of this unprecedented time.

Riva Harrison
CreComm 1988

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