Weekend lunch program fills a need at Our Place

Society sees gradual increase in usage one month into project

Just over a month into a six-month pilot project at Our Place Society, it’s clear that weekend lunches are filling a need in the community.

Thanks to a nearly $50,000 grant from the Victoria Foundation, Our Place began opening on Saturday and Sunday at the beginning of December, providing much-needed lunches for Victoria’s homeless, poor, and disabled.

“People are extremely grateful that we’re open on the weekend for lunches,” said Don Evans, executive director of Our Place. “It’s not addressing all the needs, but it certainly helps.”

The weekend program has seen between 200 to 250 people per day take advantage of the service so far.

“We expect it will continue to increase as people come to know about it,” Evans said. “Certainly, it’s showing a need for meals in the city.”

The society is actively looking for resources to expand and extend the pilot project, which is set to run until May.

“There’s a big gap when we close on weekends,” Evans said.

It’s a goal of the society to remain open on weekends and provide other meals in addition to lunch, he said. Recently, a $50,000 donation from the McLean Foundation was made to the weekend lunch program.

On weekdays, the society sees about 800 people daily, serving between 1,200 and 1,500 meals.

November and December are crucial months for the fundraising that allows the society to meet its annual operating costs of approximately $3.2 million. Almost half of its revenue comes from donations made during these months, Evans said.

While the society is partly funded by the government, it largely relies on donations from the local community. In November, the society saw a decrease in donations of 25 to 30 per cent compared to 2011.

“Even though donations slow (during January and February), the need in the community doesn’t,” Evans said.

Donations can be made to Our Place Society by visiting ourplacesociety.com or by calling 250-388-7112.

editor@vicnews.com

Just Posted

West Shore resident, local officer encourages women to take control of their safety

Kris Greffard is posting short videos with safety tips for women using local trails and parks

Point Ellice House exhibit offers new lens into colonial history

The new ‘Politics of luxury’ display studies the wealthy O’Reilly family from several angles

Police and Indigenous communities pull together in 10-day canoe journey

Victoria Police Department, Ministry of Children and Family Development took part in Pulling Together Canoe Journey

Nearly a dozen coonhound puppies and their mother to reunite at Saanich park

Dogs’ former foster family initiated one-year reunion plans

Trio brings roller skating fever to Greater Victoria

Roller Skate Victoria offers workshops, summer camps and more

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

How a Kamloops-born man helped put us on the moon

Jim Chamberlin did troubleshooting for the Apollo program, which led to its success

Sexual harassment complaints soaring amid ‘frat boy culture’ in Canada’s airline industry

‘It’s a #MeToo dumpster fire…and it’s exhausting for survivors’

How much do you know about the moon?

To mark the 50th anniversary of the first lunar landing, see how well you know space

POLL: Do you carry reusable shopping bags?

While a court ruling determined the City of Victoria’s plastic bag ban… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of July 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Body, burning truck found near northern B.C. town

RCMP unsure if the two separate discoveries are related

Couple found dead along northern B.C. highway in double homicide

Woman from the U.S. and man from Australia found dead near Liard Hot Springs

UPDATE: West Kelowna fawn euthanized, not claimed by sanctuary

Gilbert the deer has been euthanized after a suitable home was not found in time

Most Read