Long Night of Hope raises $17K in North Vancouver

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By Jeremy Shepherd, North Shore News

March 13, 2018 –  There’s reason to hope. Just like last year, a group of volunteers with rose-coloured glasses and bleary eyes woke up in cars, church pews and under the piano of St. John’s Anglican Church just off Chesterfield Avenue.

They’d spent Feb. 24 searching for Mr. Sandman in the hopes they might spur donations that would benefit the Lookout Society’s homeless shelter.

But when the sun came up and the money was counted, they found they’d smashed last year’s total of $10,400. At press time, the team had raised $17,880, “astonishingly close” to hitting their goal of $20,000, organizer Donna Lawrence noted.

The event attracted more volunteers, including North Vancouver-Lonsdale MLA Bowinn Ma, who touted the event in the B.C. legislature.

“I’m privileged enough to be able to choose to spend only one night without a home,” Ma said.

The most recent report from the North Shore Homelessness Task Force found 736 homeless people on the North Shore in 2016, as well as 295 residents at imminent risk of homelessness.

Speaking to the North Shore News in 2017, Lookout Emergency Aid Society North Shore shelter manager Bailey Mumford discussed the families, women, seniors and young people increasingly turned away from the shelter.

“Turn-aways are definitely on the rise … that’s just because of a lack of affordable housing stock right across the board for all demographics on the North Shore,” he said.

Read the full article at North Shore News: http://www.nsnews.com/community/long-night-of-hope-raises-17k-in-north-vancouver-1.23200435

BC Poverty Reduction Strategy

Too many people are struggling to make ends meet, earn a living wage, or find and keep affordable housing. Too many families are suffering without basic necessities, relying on food banks, going hungry or sending their children to school hungry.

As a first step, the B.C. government raised income assistance and disability rates by $100 per month to help people who need it most. There’s more to do. One of the critical next steps is to build and implement a province-wide poverty reduction plan with targets and timelines. Your feedback will help us understand what poverty looks like in communities across B.C., and how we can best take action to improve people’s lives.

Submit your feedback online here by March 30, 2018 at 4 p.m.: https://engage.gov.bc.ca/bcpovertyreduction/