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The Pickle Jar that Changes Lives
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By Kristine Abramoff

We all wonder at times whether we can make a noticeable difference in the world. Bruce Zubick’s pickle jar fundraiser for the Children’s Health Foundation is a powerful story of how God can build even the tiniest gestures into something bigger to impact the community. Around fourteen years ago, the Children’s Health Foundation called Bruce Zubick of Zubick’s Scrap Metal to ask his business to participate in a fundraiser for change. He was happy to participate, but this fundraiser wrapped up in a month. It left Bruce thinking that there must be something better; there must be more he could do to make an impact in the lives of children in London who were going through challenging medical issues.

Bruce was inspired by the idea of collecting spare change, and he felt that it would be fruitful to continue to give his customers the opportunity to donate their spare change to a good cause. A friend had given him several jars of pickles, and so Bruce had unused pickle jars available. He decided to use one to collect loose change. He cut a slot in the lid and put the children’s hospital sticker on the jar, showing customers that proceeds would go to the Children’s Health Foundation in London. That was around fourteen years ago, and the jar is still there today. When Zubick’s customers bring in scrap, they have the option of donating the spare change from the scrap they brought in, and can also choose to donate even larger amounts to the Children’s Health Foundation. Oftentimes customers drop in nickels and dimes, but sometimes they drop in a five dollar bill or more.

Every year, Bruce takes a cheque for this money to the annual Children’s Health Foundation Radiothon so that the money can go to children in the community who are in need because of medical reasons. Over the course of around fourteen years, God has used Bruce’s pickle jar to raise $100,000 for the Children’s Health Foundation. This money has gone to support the services and programs that the Children’s Health Foundation provides.

George Zubick with Kim (Kim and Mark 103.1FM) at the 2017 Children Health Foundation Radiothon.
This gives kids and parents access to medical technology, programs for children with disabilities, and programs like music and art therapy, which help to make being in a hospital a more positive experience for kids. The fundraiser has undeniably helped to support a program that improves the quality of life for children and families.

Bruce’s idea to create the pickle jar fundraiser was inspired by his desire to help the vulnerable in the community in whatever way he could. He says he is simply doing what he can with the resources that he has to help others. His focus is on building the community in small ways, and over time this has added up to something greater. Bruce says that “a blessing is not a blessing until it’s shared,” and encourages others to think about what blessings they have that they can share with others. Different people have different blessings to share, and each unique individual can do what they can to support others. Just as nickels, dimes, and quarters seem insignificant now, over time God can use even the tiniest gestures to make a big difference in the lives of those living in the community. Sometimes it’s less, and sometimes it’s more, but the accumulation is what makes the difference, which is certainly the case for the pickle jar.