Connecting with Chilliwack’s most needy

This year’s Chilliwack Connect event could attract more than 400 participants to First Avenue Christian Assembly, said Coun. Stewart McLean, a member of the planning team.

Everything will be given freely on Oct. 15 and nothing is expected in return.

This year’s Chilliwack Connect event could attract more than 400 participants to First Avenue Christian Assembly, said Coun. Stewart McLean, a member of the planning team.

“It’s a life-changing experience for some people who take part,” said he said. “It can give them some focus or a new direction to go in.”

The idea behind the community-driven event is simple: connect the homeless, working poor, or those at risk of becoming homeless with a cornucopia of donated goods, services and resource people.

A hot meal, a hair cut, child care, a hygiene pack and gently used clothes are some of what will be made available at no cost to participants.

Last year a single mom of five kids told the city councillor that “no one” had ever treated her so well in her whole life as she had been that day.

“It’s one of those things where it just feels like the right thing to do,” McLean said. “The idea is that we’re there to serve them, as our guests for the day, and if possible to connect them with the resource people they’re looking for.”

Everything at Chilliwack Connect is the result of more than 150 volunteers and 20 organizing team members, and sponsors, from the faith community, non-profit sector, and various levels of government.

Volunteers are paired with individuals as soon as they register to help them navigate the various kiosks and agencies on hand that may have information they need.

All participants get a door prize ticket and they all stand to  win some sort of prize during the day, as well as a shopping bag full of hygiene products and other donated items.

“Their faces just light up. So many people told me last year they had never won anything before,” he said. “Those experiences impact you emotionally.”

The atmosphere is purposely relaxed, and no one is forced to do anything they don’t care to.

The second ever Chilliwack Connect event is set for Oct. 15, starting at 8:30 a.m. at the First Avenue Christian Assembly.

Just Posted

B.C. parents missing out on hundreds of thousands of dollars in free money

Chilliwack financial advisor still banging the drum over unclaimed $1,200 RESP grant cash

Chilliwack’s Philomusica Chorus offers Mother’s Day music

Songs include Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy, Sentimental Journey at spring concert

Chilliwack driver busted with heroin after nodding off behind the wheel

29-year-old man from Vancouver facing possible charges

Vancouver TheatreSports finishes off Harrison’s Season of Performing Arts

Vancovuer TheatreSports will be performing in Harrison on May 4

Job market to remain tight in coming years: report

Conference Board of Canada predicts region’s unemployment rate to remain below five per cent

VIDEO: B.C.’s waving granny gets incredible send-off from school kids

Tinney Davidson has been waving at students on their way to school for over 11 years, but is moving in a month

Be wary of robot emotions; ‘simulated love is never love’

Research has shown that people have a tendency to project human traits onto robots

Two Vancouver police officers could face charges in crash that injured five: IIO

IIO BC requests consideration of charges against two Vancouver police officers driving two police vehicles

LETTER: Chilliwack trustee says she never suggested banning books

Setting record straight, she says, after backlash over meeting discussion

5 to start your day

Worst 10 bus routes in Metro Vancouver released, woman, 60, charged in connection to thefts at YVR and more

One million recyclable bottles ‘lost’ daily in B.C., foundation says

387 million beverage containers didn’t make it back into the province’s regulated deposit refund system in 2017

Struggling B.C. adoption agency elects new board that intends to keep it open

The previous board announced that Choices would close May 31

Woman, 60, charged in connection to thefts at YVR

RCMP believe the foreign national is part of a larger organized theft group

Vancouver man, 19, charged in human trafficking case involving teen girl

The 16-year-old girl was reported missing and later discovered in Vancouver

Most Read