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Local pastry chef finds the perfect recipe to grow business and support Habitat

People wearing masks holding a large cheque infront of a bakery.

“I’m pretty happy with the amount of money we raised. This is the first fundraiser I’ve ever done,” said Jayne Inouye, French pastry chef and owner of Cravings by Jayne.

Having opened her business during the first year of the pandemic, in the fall of 2020, she wanted to use her voice to gain attention to the need for affordable housing across the region.

Just before the holidays, Jayne baked delicious gingerbread house kits and for each kit sold proceeds were donated to Habitat for Humanity Niagara. She also acquired additional donations from the community that increased the fundraising total to $2,000.

“It was the perfect recipe,” Jayne explains about the fundraiser. “It definitely brought in more business, and I was able to give back to our community.”

Grades 5 and 6 students at Wellington Heights public school raised funds to purchase gingerbread kits as a way to give back. It all started when Sheryl Bench, the student’s teacher, had the class read ‘The Carpenter’s Gift’ by David Rubel, where the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree’s wood is recycled and used to build a Habitat home.

“This really struck a chord with these students, and they knew they wanted to do something to give back to our community,” explains Christy Guttin, Community Engagement Officer with Habitat Niagara. “They looked up Habitat for Humanity Niagara and saw that Cravings by Jayne was supporting Habitat and they thought that purchasing the gingerbread kits would be a fun way to give back.”

“We are truly grateful that Christy took the time to deliver our kits and meet my class,” said Sheryl. “We definitely felt the magic of Christmas. So proud to be involved with Habitat for Humanity as a community partner.”

Additionally, businesses purchased the gingerbread kits as team building activities and Niagara Pallet purchased them as a decorating activity for their children’s holiday party.

“I was quite busy as each gingerbread kit takes two hours to make, so I learned a few things during this campaign,” said Jayne. “I’m looking forward to doing this again for the 2022 holiday season!”

Thanks to Jayne and the community for their support with this initiative.

Additional Resources

The Voice: Wellington Heights students put compassion into practice