What a year this last one has been! When we set the course for 2020/21, none of us knew that we would be in the grips of a global pandemic that would create turmoil for all of us, but most significantly for the community that we work with.
COVID-19 required us to act quickly to modify service delivery and to close gaps that were created by shut downs and restrictions due to the necessary public health measures. We are SO proud of our amazing team that rose to this challenge, time and again, and never failed to continue to walk with our community to ensure their health and well-being.
Throughout the year, the Centre also continued to deepen our understanding on how to build an anti-oppressive framework for our work. Our board focused on building a board that better reflects the community that we serve, and committed to governance and anti-racism training.
As a staff team, we have reflected deeply on our role as a non-Indigenous agency in the uncolonization of our sector and worked on increasing our knowledge around gender diversity. This important work will continue in the upcoming year.
We have also been working hard on expanding our footprint in the community. The pandemic shone a light on many of the gaps that women and gender diverse people in our community face. It was a stark reminder that without intentional focus, these are the folks that get left behind.
The housing crisis, poverty and gender-based violence rates rose dramatically in 2020 and our focus as an organization in 2021/22 will be to respond to these growing needs. Stay tuned for more news on what’s next for us!
We want to send a huge thank you to our funders and donors, who really showed up for us this year, so that we could show up for community. Nothing we do is possible without you.
To our board, staff, mentors, students and volunteers, your commitment to the work we do is unmatched. Thank you for your unwavering dedication to our community.
To the many sister agencies we worked alongside this year, we could not have weathered this storm without you. And to the community with which we work alongside, your never-ending strength and resiliency is such a reminder that we can overcome hard things when we work together.
Lorie English, Executive Director
Cate Friesen, Board Chair