Amanda Usher will be giving away 600 to the winner of a Facebook contest designed to bring smiles to 100 Mile House resident’s faces. (Martina Dopf photo)

#100MileStayStrong contest offers $800

“It feels good helping people, it feels good helping the community”

During times like these, it’s good to have something positive to focus on, which is what Amanda Usher is trying to do with the #100MileStayStrong contest.

Usher is the manager of Andre’s Electronic Experts in 100 Mile House and has been with the store since was first opened in 2012. Herself a graduate of Peter Skene Ogden Secondary School, Usher said she loves the people and the outdoors of the community and loves volunteering in any way she can within the community. She serves as the vice-chair of the South Cariboo Chamber of Commerce, volunteers with Search and Rescue and uses her position at the store to donate to charities and societies in need.

“It feels good helping people, it feels good helping the community,” Usher said.

Since COVID-19 began Usher said she and her staff have been putting up speakers on their roof at 7 p.m. each night and blasting a song in support of the healthcare workers. The song changes each night based on requests from the general public, she said.

Her latest undertaking, the #100MileStayStrong contest, was a spontaneous idea she had inspired by a trip to Tim Horton’s earlier this month. After she ordered her coffee, Usher was pleasantly surprised to find that an unknown good samaritan had decided to pay for her coffee. Later that evening Usher began to think about how she could pay this kindness forward in the community and how she could, at the same time, shine a light on 100 Mile House’s positive community spirit.

“(I was thinking of way) to recognize people and the good stuff they’re doing and get a positive note out there (to counteract) all the negativity that’s going on online,” Usher said. “(I was just) seeing what we could do to share some happiness.”

The idea of the contest came to her that Saturday evening and she posted the beginning of her idea on Facebook. Usher said she’d give $200 away to an individual in the community with a story of helping others out and who was willing to donate half the prize to a local charity, individual or organization of their choice. As time went on, however, her seed money of $200 was matched first by Wendy McNeil then by Andre Electronics and then by Braiden and Riley Beharrell for a total of $800.

The rules for this contest are simple, Usher said. To enter one needs to simply find the original post on her Facebook page and leave a comment on it detailing who you’d donate half the money to and why given the chance. From there until Friday, May 15 Usher will monitor the post and ultimately award the money to whichever comment garners the most likes.

(Original post: use the post to nominate and vote, please and thank you)

May7, it's now upto…

Posted by Amanda Usher on Saturday, May 2, 2020

“You can nominate anyone in the community, just give the reason why you’re nominating them. It’s your choice what you do with your half of the money, whether you keep it or don’t and the winner is decided by most likes,” Usher said. “So it’s just a matter of sharing a good positive story about somebody that you appreciate for everything they’ve done for others to read and vote on.”

So far she said she’s seen a wide range of people have nominated individuals, organizations and groups of all kinds from healthcare workers to providing food for SD27 students in need.

Her ultimate goal, she said, is just to bring a smile to people’s faces, in addition to helping support those in need. Usher herself has already gotten smiles from reading the stories posted in the comments and how appreciative people are about those who care for others.

She encourages everyone to take the time this week to join in on the contest and help bring smiles to everyone’s faces.

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