Football fans aren't the only ones keeping their eye on the ball as the CFL season approaches under a cloud of uncertainty. 

Winnipeg charities say if there is a strike or lockout, they and those they support will lose out, because they depend on Blue Bombers games to fundraise.

Viola Bauer is with Dreams Take Flight, a charity that flies 100 Manitoba disadvantaged children to Disneyland every year.

She said that money comes from the group's volunteers. They get a percentage of the profits when they work at the concession stands during the games. 

Typically, one game brings at least enough to send one child to Disneyland, and sometimes more. 


This is a photo from a Dreams Take Flight trip in 2013. One hundred disadvantaged Winnipeg children, here in green t-shirts, go to Disneyland every year, funded by money raised at Winnipeg Blue Bombers games. The charity is worried about what a CFL strike would do to its work. (Dreams Take Flight)

Bauer said a strike or lockout could be disastrous. 

"We wouldn't really know where to go or what to do," she said. "How would we be able to raise $11,000 without the Bombers? So we definitely don't want them to go on strike."

Other charities echo the concern about the impact of an interruption to the CFL season.

Wanda Luna, who paints whimsical scenes and characters in the bedrooms of children battling serious illness, is worried.

"I'm really scared. I really, really am," she said. "Like this is the last thing we needed to hear today."

cfl strike worries

Viola Bauer is worried about the impact a CFL strike would have on Dreams Take Flight, a charity that flies 100 Manitoba disadvantaged children to Disneyland every year. (CBC)

Luna's charity, the Dream Room Project, also raises money through concession stands at the game. 

She said it's been having a tough time lately nailing down donations.

She's also in the midst of moving the charity into a new home. Luna said the timing couldn't be worse. 

"It could potentially break us, because we really rely on that just to cover operating costs," she said. 

Manitoba's STARS Air Ambulance Foundation and Football Manitoba also raise money at the games.

cfl strike worries

Wanda Luna, whose charity the Dream Room Project depends on money raised at Bombers' games, is worried a CFL strike would threaten the viability of her organization. (CBC)

Football Manitoba makes nearly $50,000 a game from 50/50 ticket sales.