Volunteering Is a Great Way to Invest in Community

Scotiabank has been working with Covenant House Vancouver to support vulnerable and at-risk youth in our community, for over 10 years. We are so grateful for their advocacy and support. We were able to sit down and chat with Zak Khokhar, District Vice President for Scotiabank, to learn more about Zak’s role, about Scotiabank’s involvement in community, and why they support young people.

Zak, to start, could you tell us a little bit about yourself and your role at Scotiabank?

Hi, I am Zak Khokhar, District Vice President for Scotiabank, Downtown Vancouver. I have been with the bank for over 27 years, working in variety of positions from casual teller to Branch Manager, and I am now District Vice President.  

Work-life balance is important to me. I enjoy going to the gym in the early morning, watching my son Liam’s hockey games, and spending time playing tennis with my daughter, Ella.

People know Scotiabank as a financial institution, but could you tell us about some of the ways that Scotiabank supports organizations, gives back to communities, and why you feel that it’s important to invest in these initiatives?

By investing in communities, Scotiabank strives to create better lives for the people who live, work, and play there. Contributing to your community will make it stronger and will make a difference for everyone.

Scotiabank has been supporting CHV for over 10 years. Why do you think that supporting CHV is important, from a community perspective?

It really does take a village. With Scotiabank’s support, CHV is able to increase their physical capacity to provide a safe, supportive environment where youth can develop the social, emotional, and physical skills needed to succeed in situations that most of us take for granted.

Scotiabank’s Downtown Vancouver District has volunteered at CHV over the years, and we are happy to continue this tradition.  

Thank you for supporting our Triple Match Campaign! If someone asked you about this campaign, what would you say to them?

If you’re able to, please donate today and triple your impact. 

Zak, I understand that you have volunteered with CHV. What did you do? How was the experience? Did you take away anything that you didn’t know about CHV youth or CHV itself?

My team and I were itching to volunteer, as the pandemic prevented us from doing so, over the last two years. We helped with sorting out clothes and items that were donated by generous people. It was great to work with my teammates and help organize the items that will later be given to the youth at CHV. The takeaway, for me, was that there is a lot of work that needs to get done and it cannot just be the responsibly of the CHV staff. They need community support. One way to do that is by coming to volunteer, which my team and I were happy to do.   

I understand that you attended the opening of our new building at 1280 Seymour. What did you think of the new facility? How do you think that it will impact the trajectory of the lives of the youth who use this facility?

It is an amazing new space. From the gym to the common gathering areas, this is a tremendous improvement to what CHV is able to offer youth that will help youth feel safe, help them build a sense of community, and support them on their journeys to achieve the life that they want for themselves.  

Thank you Zak, for taking the time to talk to us today, and thank you, Scotiabank, for supporting our Triple Match Campaign this holiday season!