HOPE worldwide Canada

Kimberlee Potter recognized with Volunteer of the Year Award

Kimberlee Potter of Winnipeg receiving the “HOPE worldwide Volunteer of the Year award” at the HOPE worldwide Global Conference in San Diego. Pictured with Terri Loso (Right), SeniorDirector US Programs, HOPE worldwide

Congratulations to Kimberlee Potter, our Co-Country Director.

At the recent HOPE worldwide Global conference in San Diego, Kimberlee was recognised for her dedication and outstanding volunteer work with the “HOPE worldwide Volunteer of the Year” award. We are excited to share this great news with you.

Kimberlee is passionate about helping others in her community and beyond. Ever since she took on the Chapter Director role in her home city Winnipeg, she has started and led various charitable initiatives, using her talents and gifts to help vulnerable members of her community. She is now a Board member as well as Co-Country Director of HOPE worldwide Canada.

In the last 2 years, Kimberlee created and led a HOPE worldwide Volunteer Corps program in Winnipeg for “At-risk youth, “ based around a Summer Day Camp. This highly successful program aims to provide summer fun and life skills training for children under the ward of Child & Family Services agencies. The city of Winnipeg is home to just over 800,000 people, and yet it has one of the highest rates of children in foster care in the world. During the Summer Day program, children learn life skills such as cooking and working with tools, mentoring on how to build friendships in a fun and loving environment.

Kimberlee’s commitment and volunteer work is an inspiration to all us. We wish her all the best in her future endeavours.

HOPE Worldwide Canada at the 2019 Ride For Refuge

We would like to say a huge “Thank You!” to everyone who participated in this year’s Ride for Refuge.

Every year, HOPE worldwide Canada participates in this event to raise funds for local charities that provide refuge and hope for some of the most vulnerable people on earth.

This year over 104 participants of all ages joined our teams in Toronto Central (downtown), Toronto East (Ajax), Toronto West (Brampton, Mississauga), Halifax, Edmonton, and Winnipeg.. They rode, walked and enjoyed lunch together, a fun filled day for a great cause. Our teams raised just over $16. 355.

Here are a few pictures from the HOPE worldwide Canada teams across Canada. We look forward to seeing you at next year’s event.

For more pictures, please view the full album at our Facebook page here.

HOPE worldwide Canada marched in the Toronto Ukraine Festival parade

HOPE worldwide Canada volunteers marched in the 2019 Toronto Ukrainian Festival again this year. They marched in support of the Helping Hand for Ukraine project, which provides socio-psychological programs to children in Eastern Ukraine to help them recover from war trauma.   The program is partly funded by HOPE worldwide Canada.

Our highly enthusiastic team walked and handed out flyers along the route to raise awareness of the program.

Many children in Eastern Ukraine are dealing with intense trauma caused by the armed conflict. HOPE worldwide Ukraine, through the Helping Hand for Ukraine project, provides socio-psychological support for the children, training for social workers, therapists, teachers and parents who work with the children.

Here are a few pictures from the march:

If you would like to support the Helping Hand for Ukraine Project by making a donation please click the button below.   Select Ukraine (Helping Hand program) from the drop-down menu.


Join the HOPE worldwide Canada Toronto Central Ride for Refuge Team

On Saturday October 5th, members of the Toronto chapter will participate in the annual Ride for Refuge to raise funds for local charities that support vulnerable members of our community fleeing persecution from violence in various parts of the world.

The Ride will take place at:

Ashbridges Bay Park, Toronto, 1561 Lake Shore Blvd E, Toronto, ON M4L 3W6.  

Plenty of parking at 20 Ashbridges Bay Park,  $7 flat rate for the day.


Here’s the schedule for the RIDE:

  • 8:00am – Registration opens
  • 8:45am – Opening Ceremonies
  • 9:00am – Send-off! (All distances
  • 10:00am – Registration close
  • 10:00am – Lunch service begin
  • 2:00pm – Lunch service end
  • 2:00pm – Route closes

Yummy Food on RIDE Day

There will be snacks at rest stops, and lunch will be available for participants when they return from their ride or walk.

The Ride for Refuge is an annual biking and walking event that we are proud  to support.

Please join us! You can join the team to walk or ride, or simply donate at the button below.

If you have any questions or comments please contact Camille at (647) 839 1099.


Join us as we march at the 2019 Toronto Ukraine Festival parade

HOPE worldwide Canada volunteers and supporters are invited to join us again this year as we march at the parade at the 2019 Toronto Ukrainian Festival to raise awareness for the Helping Hand for Ukraine project.

HOPE worldwide Canada volunteers marching in the 2016 parade.

Through this project, Canadians are able to provide financial support to children and parents traumatized by the war in eastern Ukraine. The program is run by HOPE worldwide Ukraine and is now entering Phase III to offer psychological assistance, training for social workers and other humanitarian aid. It has been actively supported and partly funded by HOPE worldwide Canada for the past 5 years. 

 The Festival starts with a parade of about 1,200 participants, include our own HOPE worldwide Canada participants.

Here are details for the march:

Date:  Saturday September 14, 2019.                    

Time: 10:oo am meet at High Park, at the main entrance on Bloor.

Venue: High Park, Bloor Street. The parade route is from High Park to Jane street along Bloor Street West.

Please SIGN UP and join us at the march by sending an email to Taras Kulish at Taras.Kulish@hopewwcanada.org or text/call (416) 625 7482.

Watch the video below to learn more about HOPE worldwide Canada’s participation at the march in previous years and the Helping Hand for Ukraine project.

Ukraine kids

If you can’t make it to the parade please consider making a tax deductable donation to help the children in Eastern Ukraine. They desperately need your help. To make a donation, please click below and select “Helping Hand for Children Traumatized by War In Eastern Ukraine” from the dropdown menu.

Donate Now button red





videography by Aperture Lane

Halifax Volunteers coordinate and run their first “Dress for Success” Donation drive

2019 Dress for Success – Almost-40 bags and boxes of Donations later

written by Marie Elle Charlemagne

“I needed clothes and you clothed me…” Jesus of Nazareth, Matthew 25:36a (NIV)

On April 14 members of the Halifax business community came together at a local Halifax
restaurant as the Halifax chapter conducted their first donation drive in support of our local “Dress for Success” chapter. The mission of Dress for Success is to empower women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and the development tools to help women thrive in work and in life.

The Halifax chapter’s goal through this Donation Drive was to strive to assist women in our community who may be struggling to make ends meet for themselves and their families. “Dress for Success” is a unique organization, in which they provide professional attire, support, and tools vital to helping women flourish in the work environment and attain a sense of economic independence. This volunteer-driven organization considers their work as “suiting women for employment, from the inside out.” The lives of many women within our community have been changed, not only economically but also by giving these women a sense of empowerment.

2019 DFS Supporters and Halifax chapter volunteers

“Dress for Success’ aim is to have an impact on the lives of women in our community through the type of assistance that we offer. We are so grateful for the support of HOPE worldwide Canada, for their support and for all the donors who helped make this event such a success. We had a great time and we had a lot of fun together. We also learned a lot about each other’s organizations. Most importantly, we teamed up and partnered together to have a positive impact on our community!”

– Brenda Todd-Saunders, Executive Director, Dress for Success Halifax

In the end, we had collected almost 40 bags and boxes filled with women’s professional attire of various sizes, attire suitable to wear to a job interview., in addition to accessories such as scarves, purses, and shoes.  These donations will go a long way to support women in our community and to help them take a crucial first step towards a better future. Thank you to everyone who came out to support us and here’s to our next “Dress for Success” Donation Drive!

Winnipeg’s 3rd Annual Autism Community Family Picnic

The Winnipeg chapter of HOPE worldwide Canada along with OHEYS Autism Programs will be holding our third annual Autism Community Family picnic on Saturday June 22. The event will take place at St. John’s Park in Winnipeg starting at 1:00 pm! Space is limited so please visit the link below to register your family!

Individuals (children-to-adult) on the autism spectrum and their families are welcome to come out and enjoy activities, games and a free hot dog picnic lunch! We are organizing activities to ensure everyone at all ages and stages is fully engaged and having fun. Respite workers are welcome to bring participants with autism as well. Attendees last year had a great time and felt comfortable being around other families living with autism.

ACTIVITIES INCLUDE:  Free Hot Dog Picnic Lunch (get tickets on arrival), Photo Booth (bring your camera), ball and beanbag games, Frisbee, running games, parachute games……… and more…check out the slide show to see all the fun from last year!

Please sign up for the picnic on our registration page so we can plan for food and supplies – space is limited!

For more information please contact Krista Wiebe krista.wiebe@hopewwcanada.org or text 204-797-6020. If you would like to volunteer your time to assist, please contact Krista at krista.wiebe@hopewwcanada.org.

The Easter Love Baskets Food Drive was a great success, thank you.

Thank you to everyone who donated to the Easter Love Baskets Food collection in the Toronto Central chapter. Your generous donations to our vulnerable communities in Toronto will make a huge difference.

When the food drive was launched, a request was made for donors to bring love baskets to the Toronto Centre for the Arts and drop them off at the HOPE table in the lobby. All donated items were to be placed in a basket, reusable shopping bags or gift bags. A couple of the food baskets were given to members of the Toronto Church  in need and the rest was given to vulnerable individuals and families in the community through various organizations.

Items donated included: $50 gift cards from No Frills or any other dining or store gift card (to purchase groceries or for dining), non-perishable foods (For example pasta-canned or dry, pasta sauce, tuna, peanut butter, jam, canned goods – beans, soup, stew, canned vegetables, granola bars, breakfast cereals).

We are grateful to the volunteers, friends and members of the ⁦Toronto Church who gave non perishable food, gifts cards and gifts to the food drive.

A representative from Sistering receives the donations.

The Easter love baskets went a long way for many families living in poverty in Toronto who received them. Special deliveries were made to Sistering,  serving socially isolated and homeless women, as well as Fred Victor Shelter for the homeless.

The Toronto Central chapter HOPE advisory team.

The Toronto Central chapter has many more events planned for the rest of the year. If you would like to volunteer with the chapter, contact us or send a message here. 


Recognizing Winnipeg Volunteers

What would we do without our volunteers? They are the lifeblood of all of our programs and events in the Winnipeg chapter of HOPE worldwide Canada. As we get ready to celebrate and honour our volunteers on April 7, 2019, here is a recap of the impact made to bring hope and change lives in 2018!

We started off in February by getting off the couch and into the cold! Over 14 volunteers of all ages participated in the “Coldest Night of the Year” Walk to raise much needed funds to support at risk youth  in Winnipeg.

Our volunteers walking alongside other Winnipegers in support of Coldest Night of the Year

The spring months we were focused on initiatives supporting youth in foster care. In March volunteers pounded the pavement to canvas friends, family and co-workers to collect non-perishable food items as well as personal and household products to “Stock the Shelves” for youth struggling to make ends meet. During April and May volunteers were busy teaching life skills classes to youth that are getting ready to age out of foster care.

In the month of April our chapter also hosted a breakfast fundraiser in support of the Centers of HOPE in the Philippines. Over 30 volunteers served in different capacities such as taking and selling tickets, serving food, waiting on and busing tables.  130 generous people came out for breakfast to support the children feeding program at the Philippines Centers of Hope.

June was a busy month filled with cleaning up an inner city neighbourhood, celebrating Filipino culture, helping at the Winnipeg CFS Kids in Kare picnic and hosting a family picnic for families in the autism community. Special thanks to OHEYS autism programs and RBC volunteers for helping to make the family picnic so special and to RBC for providing a $1000 grant as part of their Benevity Community Impact Fund.

Raising awareness of the Centers of HOPE Philippines at the MB Filipino Street Festival

In July and August the Winnipeg chapter hosted its first ever Hope Youth Corps where 24 youth from across Canada and the United States travelled to Winnipeg to serve in our day camps for children who are wards of Child & Family Services agencies. Our chapter volunteers spent hours preparing for the Youth Corps participants and both Winnipeg volunteers and Youth Corps participants spent hundreds of hours to make the day camps a success….the impact of their service was felt by all!

Spending hours in the kitchen preparing meals for HOPE Youth Corps participants

In the fall volunteers facilitated another session of life skills classes for kids getting ready to age out of foster care and in October volunteers walked and rode to raise funds for our chapter programs in the annual Ride for Refuge event. 35 volunteers raised over $9000!

Dedicated volunteers excited to ride 25K in support of Winnipeg programs

We ended off the year with the Homeless Christmas Wishlist program. This event took place over November and December and involved over 300 volunteer hours including students from St Avila School raising funds to purchase gifts, wrap them and make handmade cards.The hearts of the volunteers were moved and the recipients felt the love and compassion as well as receiving a personalized gift and card with well wishes.

Wow, what a busy year! Please join us on April 7 to celebrate and honour our volunteers – without them and their hearts to serve none of these events would be possible!

Bringing hope and changing the lives of Calgarians

Veterans Food Bank

There is no doubt that Calgarians are resilient.  Even though we face tough economic times right now, we will surely see better days. Through the floods, drop in oil prices and thousands unemployed, Calgarians always step up and show their sense of community. Proof that no one needs to go it alone.

For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you cared for me…

Inspired by HOPE worldwide’s 25th Anniversary video, the Calgary Chapter chose to model our volunteer activities around Matthew 25. The 2016 video shares, “Let the scriptures paint the picture; as we use them as guides, to apply them to our lives.” Heading in to our chapter’s third year, the meaning of bringing hope and changing lives has never meant so much to our volunteers. We are just getting started!

We Fed Them

The Calgary Food Bank is the first line of emergency food support for families and individuals facing crisis. Over the last five years they’ve seen consistent numbers of people who access their services. Week after week they continue to see new faces.

Every month our volunteers eagerly attend our Tuesday evening shift at the Food Bank to unpack pallets and create food hampers for those in need. In only a couple hours we can help as many as 800 people. In 2018, our volunteers successfully sorted and packed 94,600 lbs of food and impacted the lives of 6,732 people accessing the Calgary Food Bank.

In addition to the Calgary Food Bank, our chapter also supported the Veterans Association Food Bank.  After reports that the Veterans Food Bank would close in January 2019 due to a lack of food on the shelves and consistent pleas to the public, it closed suddenly months earlier than expected. Shortly after, a group of veterans came together to support their brothers in arms, creating a veterans for veterans emergency food bank called the Veterans Association Food Bank. Their website read, “Sadly over 2,500 Canadian Armed Forces veterans are living on the streets of Canada. Homelessness is a major issue facing our Canadian veterans and no one that has stood on guard for Canada should go hungry”.

Inspired by these veterans, the Calgary Chapter took up a collection of food and donations to support their efforts. For several weeks leading up to Remembrance Day, we gathered nearly 400 lbs of food which we delivered to the new Food Bank on November 12th.

We Invited Them In

There are a number of resources available in Calgary for any family in need. However, in a large system limited resources can can only go so far. Sometimes it’s the small, personal gestures that makes the biggest impact. A smile says a thousand words and, just like the ear to ear grin on the faces of the three children attending their first Rocky Mountain Church of Christ (RMCOC) Christmas Banquet, no words were necessary.

RMCOC holds an annual Christmas Banquet where, like every good potluck, members bring platter upon platter of food, creating an impressive traditional Christmas buffet. More food than can possibly be consumed fills the tables and each year much of the food is leftover.

This year, in collaboration with RMCOC our chapter arranged for a single mom and her children to join the banquet. They ate, they danced, they received gifts from Santa, lined their pockets with treats, and eagerly raced around the room to experience everything.

“To the HOPE worldwide Canada foundation that supported my family with the gift cards and a beautiful dinner, I would like to say a big thank you! I hope you know what a great kindness you have shown me and my family. We will be forever thankful to you, for you have given us the gift of hope. Thank-you!”  Banquet Family

As their mother watched her children she said, “We’re so glad to be here. I’ve eaten more tonight than I’ve eaten all week.” It was a pleasure to welcome them into our family and a blessing to send them home with full bellies and big smiles.

We Clothed Them

The Children’s Cottage Society is dedicated to preventing harm and neglect to children and building strong families through support services, respite programs and crisis nurseries. The Crisis Nursery provides seventy-two hours of cost-free care for children under the age of eight, while helping their families quickly remediate their crisis.

Crisis Nursery

The nursery is meant to feel like a home away from home for these children and they often leave with the clothes they are given. In partnership with the Auburn Bay Community Association, our chapter held a clothing drive in December to help replenish the Crisis Nursery’s closet.

For a second year, our chapter also supported Inn from the Cold who provides support for homeless children and their families. Each year they host an event called Santa’s Workshop where children and their parents can shop for one another’s Christmas presents. Our volunteers provide stockings full of warm mitts, toques, socks, toiletries and small toys. This year we were able to help fifty families celebrate Christmas.

“Santa’s Gift Shop was a hit! And your stockings saved the day! We were able to ensure everyone got something with your stockings so thank you very much!”  Meg Kominek, Inn from the Cold

We Cared For Them

Inn from the Cold

Bethany Care Centre provides a range of senior housing and care options, from independent living to supportive living, long-term care, specialized dementia care and community services. The Care Centre is also home to one of RMCOC’s senior members.

More than 24 of our volunteers gathered in the hall of the Bethany Care Centre to carol for their staff and residents. It brightened the day for many of the seniors as well as our volunteers.

There is nothing more fulfilling than the work we’ve done as a chapter and we are grateful for the opportunity to serve our fellow Calgarians. We’re looking forward to 2019!