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West Vancouver Home Depot raises more than $9K for youth charity

The funds were raised through The Home Depot Canada Foundation’s Orange Door Project
A representative from Hollyburn Community Services Society receives a cheque for $9,163.05 from employees of West Vancouver's Home Depot.

Staff at West Vancouver’s Home Depot have raised more than $9,000 in one month, with funds to go towards helping local homeless youth.

On Monday afternoon a representative from Hollyburn Community Services Society, a non-profit charitable organization that provides support services for the young and homeless, collected a cheque for $9,163.05 in a small ceremony in the Park Royal store.

“This is just beyond our belief,” said Paul Butler, the society’s director of youth services.

“This campaign is so important because it’s really about helping break the cycle of homelessness. And we’re actually doing it, we’re seeing the success.”

The funds were raised through The Home Depot Canada Foundation’s Orange Door Project, a twice-yearly campaign that sees stores across the country raise money for their own charity partner. This year staff were encouraged to ask shoppers for $5 and $10 donations, alongside the $2 as with previous years.

Since the program’s inception in 2014, West Vancouver’s Home Depot has secured Hollyburn’s Youth Safe House as their charity of choice, raising more than $300,000 in that time. Prior to this most recent campaign, staff had raised another $12,400 in June.

Butler, who is also expecting to receive funding from the federal government as part of its youth support initiative, said the cash raised by Home Depot helps the youth on a more personal level.

Both sets of funds will go towards vital emergency repairs at Hollyburn’s Youth Safe House and Life Success Transitional Homes, but the money raised via store staff will also help fund employment programs and medical plans for the youth that reside within them, he said.

“When we originally opened the house we had a lot that would come in and then go back to the streets, now 90 per cent of the kids we are serving don’t go back to the streets thanks to the funds so far raised through this program,” said Butler.

He said one particular youth, that the Home Depot staff have met with previously, is now close to finishing a plumbing apprenticeship as a result of the funds raised.

Home Depot spokesperson King Chow said the large sum was the result of impressive efforts from the whole team.

He said much of the funds were raised at the hands of the staff out on the floor who engaged with customers, but there was also plenty of help from staff working in other areas of the store, their friends and their family.

“For the three weeks of the campaign, we got around 30,000 customers in the store,” he said.

“But there was also so much excitement and desire to help inside the store from our team members, and our team collected 10 per cent of this cheque....There were so many people willing to contribute to this great program.”

Mina Kerr-Lazenby is the North Shore News’ Indigenous and civic affairs reporter. This reporting beat is made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.

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