The Booster Bench Project was created to foster strong childhood friendships by providing a place to connect in the areas of inclusion, empathy and kindness. The team worked with local schools in SD 61 to develop an in-class discussion activity for kids focusing on what it means to "give a boost" (an anti-bullying message). In each school, the "Booster" message was reinforced through the installation of a colourful permanent bench on or near the play areas.
The launch of the first Booster Bench was unveiled at South Park Family School in School District 61, the team’s partner. Throughout 2016, the project will expand to at least 10 more schools across Greater Victoria, building a visible, community-wide friendship network. A special thanks to Coast Capital Savings, Beatrice Stevens Memorial Foundation, South Park Family School, Ecole Quadra School, local dignitaries, Associate Superintendent of Schools and the Honourable Mike Bernier, Minster of Education. Thank you to Carole James, MLA for Victoria Beacon Hill who delivered a 2 minute speech in the House of Commons.
Team DiverCity partnered with Help Fill a Dream Foundation to develop and launch the Happy Half-Birthday Challenge aiming to raise awareness of volunteer opportunities focused on assisting local families of children with life-threatening illnesses. The campaign encourages the community to give back on their half-birthday through volunteerism and donations.
Working with Jeneece Place, a home away from home for families dealing with these challenges, the team coordinated the installation of a Sanctuary Garden – a natural setting for nature therapy. The official opening of the Jeneece Place Sanctuary was celebrated with the ceremonial planting of a dogwood tree, special guest speakers, a ribbon cutting and family BBQ.
Here are some of the amazing businesses and organizations that supported this project:
- Hothouse Marketing
- BC Transit
- Alpine Group
- Save-a-Lot Hauling
- Costa Verde Landscaping
- Bald Eagle Landscaping
- Bartlett Tree Experts
- Grounds 4 Design
- United Brotherhood of Carpenters Local Union 608
- Victoria Firefighters Charitable Foundation
- Harlequin Nature Graphics
- Bond Bond's Bakering
- Villages Pizza
- Harbour Air
- Country Grocer
- Pacific Audio Works
- Hilltop Greenhouse
- Eurosa Farms
- RC Construction
- Jeneece Place
- Boys Scouts of Canada
The focus on this project was to provide a one-day workshop to youth transitioning into adulthood. The team organized a variety of local resource people to offer interactive workshops to youth from the WestShore in areas of life skills. Topics included resume writing and job search; renting and tenancy rights; financial literacy; stress management; and how to cook on a budget.
82% of the youth wanted to participate again to further their knowledge. The Project partner was the West Shore Boys and Girls Outdoor Ed. Centre. A special thanks to volunteer facilitators who offered their time and expertise supporting and inspiring our youth for the next stage of their journey.
This project identified the need for safe, reliable and cost effective transportation for community members transitioning out of life circumstances such as poverty and addiction. Through the generous donations of bicycles, helmets, locks and safety manuals, the plan empowered 25 identified individuals with a sense of ownership, allowing them to move forward with their lives.
The team’s partners were Anawim Companion Society and the Greater Victoria Cycling Coalition. Other partners included Broad St. Cycle, MEC, Vancity, IsleShare, Recyclistas and Saanich Police. A special thank you to those who gathered, stored, donated and repaired the bicycles.
Community Partner: Oral Care for Children and Adolescents (ORCCA)
This team’s mission was to help address the gap in awareness of oral health care as an important part of youth health care, which includes increasing access to affordable dental care for children and adolescents. While working with volunteer students of the Dental Hygienist Program at Camosun College, the team endeavoured to deliver a presentation that focused on delivering knowledge and awareness of dental care to young families in the Saanich Peninsula. The team’s partner, ORCCA, is building a new clinic in the annex of Sidney Elementary School, launched in May. Families with low incomes and no dental insurance will be able to access the services through their Health Child Card.
Orange Day is a United Nations Campaign to raise awareness and show opposition to Violence Against Women with the colour orange, on the 25th day of each month. In early March, this team arranged a demonstration/rally at UVic and invited employers, police, and local suport agencies to learn about the impact of violence against women in the workplace. Along with their partner, the Cridge Centre for Families, they also provided resources for employers.