Ray Jarl has decided to step down from one of his volunteer positions, and in so doing, he has opted to take his parting gift and pay it forward.
Jarl, who was a director on the Community Futures, East Parkland board for 10 years, retired recently. As a way of saying thank you for his years of dedicated service, the board handed him $1,000 which was to go to the community organization of his choice.
Jarl decided to give the money to Rimbey Chamber of Commerce.
He selected the chamber because he sees the group as an organization that really can make a difference to the Town of Rimbey.
“I chose them because they promote the town,” he said.
He gave the money freely, without any strings attached.
“I figure they will know the best way to use it and it’s best to just let them go about what they’re doing,” he said.
Giving back to the community is not a new characteristic for Jarl, who moved to Rimbey in 1971. He spent 18 years on town council, four of which he was mayor. He is a Lions member and also served on several other committees and organizations.
He and his wife Lorraine, who have four children, nine grandchildren and three great grandchildren, moved to Rimbey from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Jarl was an electrician, working for Texaco.
He believes Rimbey was a good choice for his family.
“The people are nice here, very friendly and ready to help each other out,” he said.
Chamber president Jackie Stratton is pleased there are people like Jarl in the community; people who are willing to financially help out the chamber, a non-profit organization.
“We are very honored and excited,” she said.
Although the chamber has not yet decided where the funds will go, Stratton wants to see the money goes towards a longterm project or item and not put into a general account.
Hans Spelt, president of Community Futures, East Parkland commended Jarl for a job well done during his time as director.
“He didn’t have much to say, but when he did speak everybody sat up and took notice,” he said. “And he did have a great sense of humor. He will be missed for sure.”
Community Futures is a lending organization that helps candidates who may not be able to borrow from another lending institution. Its mission is to develop, diversify and sustain local economies.
CFEP provides business advice, business training, assists businesses as an alternative lender and assists community-based economic development projects.
All lending decisions are made by volunteer representatives, who come to the board table to provide insight into the communities they represent, but more importantly, to work with the other members to direct resources and activities to benefit the entire region.