Matt and Shirley Ostertag of Cannington, inspired by the support they’ve received in recent years, are hoping to help other area families in need this Christmas.
“Tis the season of giving! In honor of our son Austin’s memory we would like to give back to our community this year. My family knows what it is like to struggle and how the littlest gestures make the biggest difference,” reads a post on the Ostertag’s business, Austin’s Treasures, Facebook page.
In December of 2014, approximately a year after their son Austin passed away, the Ostertags welcomed twins Chase and Aubree into their family. Before long, it became clear something was wrong.
Chase struggled with various gastrointestinal challenges, resulting in mounting medical costs, but as Matt notes, the community responded in miraculous fashion. More than $14,000 was raised for the Ostertag family.
“Well, a few years ago when Chase was sick and we needed helped, the community jumped right in! They were amazing! The support from everyone was truly amazing, we never expected the community to react the way they did. So now that we’re back on our feet, it’s time to give back,” says Matt.
Last year for Chase and Aubree’s birthday party, Shirley and Matt opened it up to the public and raised more than $800 for the Ronald McDonald House in Toronto. In addition, their van was packed full of clothes, food and toys for the families staying at the House during the Christmas season.
“So this year we thought we would give back to our local community and take food donations for the food bank. So far it’s been good, but we want to pack a van full of food donations! All we’re asking is to ‘Like’ the post on Austin’s Treasures (Facebook) page. It’s that easy.”
Every ‘like’ the post receives results in one food donation, Matt explains. If people “like” the Austin’s Treasures page itself, that’s an additional food donation. Furthermore, if people would like to donate items they are welcome to drop them off at the Ostertag’s home to be added to the mountain for the food bank.