Report on CanCham Christmas 2017 – supporting “Nāc līdzās!”

The second annual CanCham Christmas supporting “Nāc līdzās!” (Come Along) took place on Friday, December 8th, 2017.

Sixty individually and lovingly produced gingerbread maple leafs (a national symbol of Canada) wrapped in plastic film with red ribbons expertly baked by Indra Sproge-Kalvina the day before, were set aside for each of our guests  - a lovely start to a pleasant evening. This welcome met us as we entered the 27th floor of the Radisson BLU Latvija Hotel for the second annual CanCham Christmas supporting “Nāc līdzās!” (Come Along) on Friday, December 8th, 2017. As our members and distinguished guests arrived, the networking, and raffle ticket sales headed by Henrik Mjoman, began.

Our Chairman, Ed Kalvins, welcomed those present and spoke of the year that was, and that we should focus on developing our business opportunities as that is what we are in the CanCham for, and that we had a lot to look forward too. Yet at this time of year, it is particularly appropriate to think of others. He then introduced Sarma Freiberga, Chair of the Board of “Nāc līdzās!” ( who provided those present with an insight as to “Nāc līdzās!” objectives and work, and recognized the patroness of “Nāc līdzās!” - Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga, for her support of the organization. The Foundation “Nāc līdzās!” (Come along!) supports children and young people with disabilities to integrate into society, and helps their parents’ understand the problems that they face.

This was followed by performances by Diāna Ponaskova and Līva Palēja of “Nāc līdzās!”. Diāna’s singing was beautiful and wasn’t affected by her being in a wheel chair, while Līva’s musical talent playing the  saxophone was clearly visible despite her blindness. They are great role models for youth with disabilities. A humbling moment – as we presented flowers to Sarma, Diāna and Līva, we realized that we had left out Līva’s mother. Clearly those that support people with disabilities are true heroes and deserve recognition. Live and learn. Surly those of us who sometimes feel challenged in life need to recognize that our issues are peanuts compared to what these people go through. This is why we at the CanCham are proud to support “Nāc līdzās!” and their objectives. 

We thank our members and friends for the raffle gifts, and those that purchased raffle tickets (see Donated Gifts for Raffle). After all, it’s all about giving. During the draw we presented a slide show showing each of the raffle gift donors (see Donor Companies). As the prizes were given out, we could see both the donor and the recipient. This sets the pace for networking later. The gifted prizes were top notch and included tax consultancy, hotel stay-overs, Indian food, betting money, language lessons, wine, cognac, flower pots and an internet radio – to just name some! 

The CanCham is pleased to pass on €650 to “Nāc līdzās!”.

A new “Nāc līdzās!” choir hopes to participate the Latvia’s 100 year Song Festival next year and requires funding. We encourage our friends and members to donate. Donations can be sent to the CanCham (Swedbank - Canadian Chamber of Commerce in Latvia or Kanādas Tirdzniecības Palāta Latvijā, account nr. LV41HABA0551042837971) indicating “Nāc līdzās!” fund.

We thank all for their great spirit and attendance and look forward to seeing you in January!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New from the Board and Audit Committee of CanCham!

For pictures, see

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