The Purica Foundation Raised

$115,000 For The Healthiest Babies Possible


The Purica Foundation is proud to announce that the 2023 Purica Gala event raised $115,000 in donations for the Healthiest Babies Possible. A program provided by the Hiiye’yu Lelum Society.


2022 Donation Recipient

Cowichan Valley Youth Services


The Purica Foundation is proud to announce that with the generous support of our community, we were able to raise an astounding $150,000 for the Cowichan Valley Youth Services.


2023 Committee Members

Sandra Payne, Cindee Hulton, Nicky Lee, Chantal Clarke, Michelle Bird​, Marnie Watkin, Becky Hogg, Carrie Kendall, Megan Dragicevich, Jennifer Nydahl, Paula Ramwell, Heather Horn

What Drives Us

Foundation Committee

The Purica Foundation, a fund held with the Victoria Foundation, designed to generate charitable donations, fundraising initiatives, and promotional support for key community initiatives. The Purica Foundation Committee share an unwavering commitment to help others to reach their full potential and to work as a team to create positive long-lasting change in our Cowichan Communities.

Our committee is managed by a 12 person-strong group of women that successfully blend a wide-range of skills and talents, including financial management, marketing, fundraising, communications, graphic design, visual arts and performing arts.

Marnie Watkin

Board Chair

Marnie is a lifetime resident of the Cowichan Valley and co-owner of PURICA.

She is the creator of the Purica Foundation, of which, since the inception of the foundation in 2016, it’s board of dynamic women have raised funds and awareness for Cowichan Hospice House and the Cowichan Valley Youth Services HUB project.

Marnie is a proud volunteer. She dedicates time to Nourish Cowichan, assisting in providing nutritious meals to schoolchildren in the Cowichan Valley.

Marnie and her family also play a role in being coaches and managing team applications for the Duncan Wildcats as they prepare and compete at Operation Trackshoes.

Marnie is married to PURICA Co-Owner Trevor Watkin and they are very proud of their adult children, Kate and Matthew and recently welcomed a wonderful son-in-law and beautiful granddaughter.

Marnie’s superpower is entertaining. No group is too small or too big!

Best words to describe Marnie are, loves to be surrounded by her family and friends, travel enthusiast, music lover, always up for a dance party and is passionate about giving back to her community.

Sandra Payne

Board Member

The Cowichan Valley has been Sandra’s home since 2012 when she and her family moved from the mainland. She is a wife and proud mother to 3 children. Sandra has always been passionate about working with people with varying abilities and has devoted her life’s career to this. For many years Sandra’s work focussed on directly supporting individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders as well as managing various residential and day programs.

Following that, she worked as an Infant Development Consultant in the lower mainland and loved working with babies and families. Since moving to the Island Sandra has been employed by the Cowichan Valley School District as an Education Assistant and is passionate about her job. She is grateful to be living in such a diverse area and being part of an amazing group giving back to the community.

Sandra’s super power is her positivity and willingness to reflect, learn and grow as an individual. She has faced some unique challenges in her life and believes that it has been these traits that have allowed her to persevere, adapt and even grow during difficult times.

Sandra is best described as family loving, compassionate, grounded, loyal and insightful. She loves a good adventure and enjoys camping, boating, fishing and travelling.

Paula Ramwell

Board Member

Paula grew up in and now lives with her husband and daughter in the Cowichan valley.

She enjoys being outdoors, hiking and cycling, travelling, and spending time with family and friends.

Paula has worked as an RN for almost 30 years, specializing in maternity and labour and delivery and most recently working in a maternity clinic.

She finds working with women and their families and supporting them through their pregnancies and transition into parenthood very rewarding .

Working so closely with new families has given Paula insight into the needs and concerns of families in our community.

The Purica Foundation Board provides a place where an enthusiastic, caring, creative, (not to mention fun) group of women come together to serve the community which we all call home.

‘I am proud to be a member of a board whose goal it is to make a positive difference in our community.’

Words to describe Paula; Friendly, caring, helpful, up for an adventure, eager to lend a hand, visit and share a laugh.

Heather Horn

Board Chair

Heather has worked in Retail and customer service as many different roles but mainly as a manager for 25 years.

For 22 of those years she has raised two children on her own that played plenty of sports. That being said that never stop Heather from helping her community in any way she can.

Over the years Heather has been very involved with her children’s sports teams, leading fundraisers, serving as a board member, and managing teams.

One of her fondest memories of volunteering is serving our Indigenous Elders at their different events. Heather’s best asset is fundraising and helping manage an event in anyway she can to make it a smooth running operation.

Best words to describe Heather would be, Warm Hearted, Super Mom, Sports enthusiast, Hard worker, and a love for her community. 

Michelle Bird

Board Member

Michelle is a certified Colon Hydrotherapist, and owner/operator of the Cleansing Room at the Sol Center in Duncan. She has been providing colonics to help clients improve their health for the past 23 years. She is a wife and mother of two boys and enjoys spending time outdoors in this beautiful valley, being active with her family and friends.

Michelle’s superpowers are caregiving, positivity, and kindness. As a mother and volunteer coach she uses her superpowers to encourage others and promote a positive atmosphere.

Best words to describe Michelle would be homemaker, health nut, competitor, a people person, and obsessed with Frenchies. She is inspired to be part of the Purica Foundation Board, focusing on giving back to both the community and its wonderful people.

Carrie Kendall

Artistic Creator

Carrie was born and raised on Vancouver Island, spending the past 15 years in the Cowichan Vallley. She is a mother, wife, artist, and volunteer. Her super power would be creating beautiful spaces, memorable moments and meaningful connections.

Carrie finds joy in creativity, travel, culinary experiences, interior design, family, volunteering with Nourish Cowichan, yoga, and nature.

The best words to describe Carrie are, compassionate, fun-loving, wise and artistically gifted.

Nicky Lee


Nicky began her love of numbers while working for a credit union on Saltspring Island at 15. By 26 she had moved up the ladder and was a Bank Branch Manager in Victoria. With four children at home playing almost every sport….. Nicky spent many years sitting on boards, fundraising and doing the books for many non-profits.

Nicky’s superpower is little ones, over the years Nicky and her husband Michael, have fostered 70 plus children from the Cowichan valley.

Best words to describe her would be, Proud mom, Foodie, Traveler, G&T lover, Bookkeeper, Book lover, Aunty Candy and Aunty too many little ones.

Megan Dragicevich


Megan Dragicevich was born and raised on a farm in rural Alberta, where there was always a strong sense of community and where she witnessed first-hand what it truly meant to be a community-minded person.

Megan moved to the Cowichan Valley nearly 30 years ago. She fell in love with the area and her now husband, and never left. Here, Megan and Mike have enjoyed living and raising their two beautiful daughters. Megan has also been a team member of the PURICA family since 2008.

Being on the Purica Foundation Board simply reinforces what an incredible community the Cowichan Valley is, and how much can be achieved when people come together to support individuals and organizations in need. 

Jennifer Nydahl


Jennifer and her husband Erik are lifelong residents of the Cowichan Valley where they have raised their two children. When both kids were young and active in hockey, it was at that time when the importance of volunteering and community involvement became apparent.

Since then, Jennifer has volunteered for numerous events and causes over the years. She joined the Purica Foundation at its inception in 2016 where she co-shares the Secretary position with Megan Dragicevich.

If you asked Jennifer what her super power is, she would tell you it is empathy. She truly believes giving back to her community is impactful and rewarding and finds that being able to do so with this group of like-minded individuals is endlessly inspiring.

Chantal Clarke


Chantal has always had a love for volunteering in her community. Whether it was at her children’s schools or sporting activities, to co-founding the Duncan annual ‘Run for the Clause’ Santa fun run event or coaching and organizing for the Duncan Wildcats, a team committed to supporting individuals with physical and mental challenges which she has done now for just over 20 years.

Chantal’s superpower is connecting people and resources from the many diverse backgrounds, through volunteering, work, family, and amazing friendships. Always approaching situations, projects, and challenges with a solution focused approach, and looking for different opportunities for resources or funding.

Best Words to describe her are a confident and dedicated Mum, a champion of others, creative, resourceful, hardworking, and fun-loving.

Cindee Hulton

Board Member

Cindee loves calling the Cowichan Valley her home where she lives with her husband and two boys.

With a work hard play hard mantra for life, Cindee enjoys balancing her career creating custom-branded apparel with fun-filled times with friends and family, volunteering, dragon boating, hiking, dancing, surfing, reading, and curling up and watching a good movie.

Cindee can be described as creative, caring, a problem-solver, witty, passionate, and hard-working.

“I am truly so excited to be a part of this amazing board of inspiring, creative, hardworking humans with the intent to make a difference in our community.”

Becky Hogg

Board Member

Becky was born and raised and proudly calls the Cowichan Vally home with her husband Mike.

Becky is a mother to 3 adult boys, Ryan, Brendan and Owen.

In 2007 Becky opened a hair salon, Mint which she is still owner and operator with her business partner.

She loves spending her time off with family and friends and always looking to have a good laugh. “If you aren’t laughing you aren’t living.”

Becky is proud to be a part of a Dragonboat team out of Cowichan Bay. Being on the Ocean/ water is something that she has always found healing and freeing. They have had some great success this season, with a team camaraderie that is one to reckon with.

There was no hesitation when being asked to be a part of the Purica Foundation as she knows the impact and success the Purica Foundation has had on this community. A community that she has been lucky enough to be a part of since birth.

“I am so honoured to be a part of this group of passionate women whose hearts are so big and beautiful.”

Past Events

Purica Gala

2023 Purica Gala

2023 Purica Gala

This year’s Gala theme will be Back to the 80’s Box Office Hits! With all proceeds going to the Healthiest Babies Possible.

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2022 Purica Gala

2022 Purica Gala

Thank you to all of our sponsors, donors, volunteers and supporters for helping raise a total of $150,000 for the Cowichan Valley Youth Services Project!

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2019 Purica Gala

2019 Purica Gala

Thank you to all of our sponsors, donors, volunteers and supporters for helping raise a total of $100,000 for the Cowichan Valley Youth Services Project!

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