North Shore Waterfront Gala Benefits Two Local Community Organizations
Aug 01, 2019
The North Shore Waterfront Gala, sponsored by five key waterfront businesses in North Vancouver – Fibreco, Kinder Morgan, Neptune, Seaspan and Western Stevedoring – took place on May 16th. Every three years, Gala organizers select North Shore not-for-profit organizations serving children and families to receive the net proceeds of the event. This year, Hollyburn Family Services Society’s Youth Safe House and Sharing Abundance were chosen to become the Gala beneficiaries for the next three years. In 2019, each received a grant of $50,000. An additional $100,000 raised at the event was used to establish the Waterfront Industry Endowment Fund with the North Shore Community Foundation, which will enable us to provide grants to local organizations in years to come.
Hollyburn Family Services Society
Hollyburn Family Services Society’s focus is on addressing social issues in our community. Currently, this includes domestic and sexualized violence, homelessness (youth, seniors and families), and other issues that marginalize youth. The youth safe house provides short-term housing for youth ages 13-18 who are homeless or living in unsafe situations. It gives them nutritious meals, clean rooms, showers and laundry facilities and helps them until they can return home safely or find an alternative living arrangement.
A three-year funding commitment from the Waterfront Gala will help Hollyburn reduce the number of youth who are experiencing homelessness or living in unsafe environments. The Society also looks forward to the relationships it will form with the waterfront industry, and opportunities to expand awareness.
In particular, they are hopeful that this new partnership will allow the community to better understand the impacts of youth homelessness and the benefits that programs and assets such as the youth safe house provide to youth and the community as a whole. Joy Hayden, Innovation and Engagement Specialist, says, “many local businesses struggle to find qualified employees, a situation that could be partially rectified by stabilizing our at risk youth and supporting them with housing and education so they can work and contribute to our community.”
To learn more about the important work of Hollyburn Family Services and find out how you can support them, visit society.hollyburn.ca.
Sharing Abundance is about inclusion. By working to address two very different types of hunger among North Shore residents, it is moving isolated people who are living in the margins into communities and treating them with dignity.
The first type of hunger is tummy hunger, or hunger for food – experienced by many people who don’t have enough money for food or access to it. The second type is heart hunger, or the issues caused by social isolation. Sharing Abundance provides programs such as a community lunch and dinner every week for families, as well as a senior’s lunch program with a featured speaker twice a month.
Lizz Lindsay, Founder of Sharing Abundance, says that for her, the impact of the waterfront industry coming together was immediately clear. “I think the thing that surprised me was the sense of pride I had in the amazing contribution to our community by the waterfront industry. I love walking around Lonsdale Quay and seeing the Gala sponsors’ businesses, and now when I look at the industrial waterfront I think, ‘oh my goodness they’re part of us.’ Being part of the Waterfront Gala is a tremendous validation that our efforts are important and recognized by the community.”
As a new beneficiary of the North Shore Waterfront Gala, Sharing Abundance plans to use the funds they receive to support family meal programs and work towards their ultimate goal, a permanent location where they can prepare and deliver food to the community on an ongoing basis.