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We'll use your favourite recipes to teach our youth valuable cooking skills!

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Looking for something fun to do this Thursday? Come help us say thanks!

Thank-a-Thon's are fun-filled, high energy evenings where volunteers get together and call our donors just to say “thank-you”. Because we are primarily privately funded, it is important for us to be able to reach our donors and thank them personally for the difference they make in our young peoples’ lives. During November, December and January our volunteers reached over 7870 donors!

Starting April 2, volunteers will meet at Covenant House every Monday and Thursday from 5:30pm-8:00pm. You can sign up to volunteer for one Thank-a-Thon or as many as you like!

If you would like to volunteer for our Thank-a-Thon program please call Amanda at 604-639-8920 or email aemes@covenanthousebc.org. Thank-a-Thons are also ideal for families and school, church and corporate group who would like to volunteer together.

If you can give us a couple hours of your time, we can guarantee you a positive, uplifting experience!

A youth feels a sense of ownership towards ensuring the sanctuary of CHV

We had a bit of a crisis in the drop-in.  Two female clients were having a conflict in the clothing room, so I separated the clients and spoke to them separately.  One was a long-term client who immediately apologized and agreed to stay away from the other girl.  The other was fairly new to us and, when she began threatening the first client, was asked to leave the Drop-In.  This young woman refused to leave and became increasingly loud and aggressive.

After several minutes of asking her to leave on her own, staff called the police.  When a police officer arrived, he spent almost three quarters of an hour listening to this young woman and trying to convince her to leave on her own rather than in handcuffs.  I was impressed with how patient this officer was with this angry and hostile young woman. 

When everything had calmed down, I spoke with the other woman involved.  She told me that her first instinct had been to get into a physical altercation with the other client, but she believed that Covenant House needed to be safe for everybody and trusted staff to deal with the situation appropriately.  It was a wonderful thing to hear her say, because I clearly remember working in the shelter the first time this young woman stayed with us, and at that time she certainly didn’t trust staff or feel a commitment to keeping Covenant House a place of sanctuary. 

As I recall, she was pretty hostile and intimidating herself.  She has grown with us, and now feels a sense of ownership towards ensuring the sanctuary of this place.  I’ve even heard her tell other clients to “chill out” when they’re getting angry or being disrespectful to staff.

Kevin Ryan Speaks Out On Trafficking

Kevin Ryan President and CEO of Covenant House International recently wrote an article for The Huffington Post titled, "Taking Down Pimps Without Traumatizing Victims".

Here is an excerpt from the article:

"The father was known as "Mr. Vee," and had worked as a pimp for about two decades, instructing his son, known as "King Koby," in the family business. They tattooed these street names on the women they exploited. One woman had a crown with a dollar sign tattooed above her pubic bone. Another had "King Koby" and a barcode permanently inked on her neck.

I don't think I will ever see a barcode in the same way, having had to form a mental picture of a greedy man, with no respect for the dignity of a young woman, marking a person as his commodity, his sack of protoplasm, to be used by strangers over and over and over again, for his personal profit.

But I see causes for hope in this dreary case. The trafficked women were not arrested, and instead, after years of victimization, are being offered services like housing and counseling, to help them adjust to life without chains."

Although the article focuses on a case in New York, human trafficking is a concern for many countries including Canada. We have talked about human trafficking in the past as and our own Pastoral Counsellor, Sister Nancy Brown is an expert on the topic. Sister Nancy is available to speak to groups (school or churches etc.) who want more information. Contact us if you are interested in a presentation or simply want more information. 


Kevin Ryan, President & CEO Covenant House International

It Takes a Village...

You probably know that CHV provides a "one-stop shop" approach for youth leaving the streets and achieving independence. What you may not know is that we are always working with different community partners as well. We want our young people to have as many supports in place as possible and whenever possible we don’t want to duplicate services. If we know of an organization in the community doing great work then we want our young people to know about it too.

One of the programs we refer our youth to often is Quest Food Exchange. They provide access to affordable, healthy food to those who face barriers; the youth who access our Outreach program are a great example. A young person may be working and living on their own but still be struggling to make ends meet (we all know how expensive it is in Vancouver). Having access to healthy and affordable food choices can make a big difference to our youth especially as they are learning to become independent adults.

We have all heard the term “It Takes a Village to Raise a Child” and Covenant House truly believes the more people helping our youth the better. Thanks for being part of our village!