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On July 21st, the Syrian families visited Science World for the first time. The children and parents were so excited to explore and discover new adventures. They examined displays of human boday, exhibition of animals and different insects. There were fascinated with the environment and had an exciting time which they will always remember. 

August at the Family Centre

August Events
August 1st, Monday:BC Day The Family Centre will be CLOSED.
August 5th & 12th, Fridays: 9:30 - 11:30 AM Friday Morning Drop-Ins We are opening on these Friday mornings for additional Family Drop-In!
August 17th, Wednesday: 10 AM - 2 PM Picnic at Robson Park Grab your lunch and your blanket and join us for a picnic at Robson Park!  Crafts and fun activities will be provided. Hope to see you all there!

Save the date!
October 1st, Saturday: 2 - 5 pm. 40th Anniversary Family Dance
Cost - $10 per adult and $5 per child, infants under 1 year old are free
Location - Holy Trinity Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral, 145 E 10th Ave, Vancouver BC, V5T 1Z4

You can also help our refugee families attend our 40th Anniversary Family Dance! $5 sponsors a child, and $10 sponsors an adult. Or you can donate $30 to sponsor an entire family.

Tickets on sale on August 15th on Eventbrite.https://mpfcsfamilydance.eventbrite.ca


Canada Day 2016

This year's Canada Day celebration was spectacular! Many families came and checked out all the festivities such as craft making, face painting, sing-a-longs and the food. Jenny Kwan, MP for the Vancouver-Mount Pleasant riding, also came by to say some kind words to our families and assisted in the Canada Day cake cutting. Thank you to all our volunteers, neighbourhood supporters and performers. Special thanks to BC Mobile Dairy Classroom, Vancouver Public Library and the Vancouver Police Department. 

 
Goodbye Summer Students
We will be saying goodbye to our three lovely summer students as of August 19. Since their arrival in June, they have been highly supportive in our Family Drop -In Programs, as well as, assisting in planning for our upcoming fall events. The Mount Pleasant Family Centre staff would like to thank them for all their support, creativity and positive demeanor these past months. We wish them well in their future endeavours.
 

Rest, Play, Grow!


We have some books left of Deborah MacNamara's book, Rest, Play, Grow. Deborah is senior faculty at the Neufeld institute. The book is based on the popular Neufeld course "Making Sense of Preschoolers" which we offer here at the centre twice a year. The book is $20, payable by cash or cheque,  Family Centre receives $8 from each sale.

Mugs for Sale!
We have partnered with JustWork organization who are focused on the development of social enterprises to offer dignified, meaningful work opportunities to people facing barriers to work. Mugs are on sale $30 and $5 goes to the Family Centre.To purchase these beautiful handcrafted mugs, please speak to a staff member. 


Lost & Found
Have you lost something? Please check out the Lost and Found bin next time you are at the Family Centre. There are many things that need to be claimed such as sun hats, diaper bags, hoodies and enviro mugs. If you don't know where the Lost and Found bin is, please ask a staff and they will direct you to its location.
 

Your Membership Counts! 
Annual membership runs from May 1st to April 30th, and costs $45 per year. Membership fees are a much needed part of our annual revenue and help fund our Family Drop In program, parent education, workshops, special events and seasonal celebrations.

Membership is an integral part of community participation and an effective way to contribute to our sustainability. A Family Membership at the MPFCS is $45.00 per year or 86 cents per week.

If you did not have a membership last year, please go directly to our membership page. To renew your membership please go to CanadaHelps.org. When you visit the Family Centre, you can pay using cash, credit card, or cheque. Please speak to one of our staff and they will help you.

Family Day Care Providers and Nannies are asked to request parents of the children in their care to purchase a MPFCS membership.

July at the Family Centre

Welcome Theresa!
Theresa is originally from the Kootenays and has worked in the non-profit community for over 15 years. She has experience in creating and implementing programs for various target audiences on a provincial and community level. Her passion lies in helping people and making a positive contribution within her community. Her most recent job catered to children and their families with a focus on community programming, as well as, childhood developmental disabilities. She is a mother of 2 young kids and lives in the Mount Pleasant area. In her spare time, she likes to bike, garden and spend time with friends and family. She looks forward to her new role at MPFCS and meeting new friends.



 

Welcome Summer Students!
Michelle is currently a 4th year student at UBC. When she was younger she regularly attended Mount Pleasant Family Centre and is very happy to be able to contribute to the Centre that gave her very memorable experiences. 

Kara strives to support healthy growth and development of babies and toddlers at the Family Centre through organizing and implementing interactive activities with the children and their caregivers. She enjoys her work at the Family Centre, as it gives her opportunities to establish meaningful connections with the culturally diverse groups of parents and children.

Joanna is excited to be able to interact with toddlers and families to support healthy development this summer. She hopes to meet as many of the families as she can, so be sure to drop in sometime!


Charity Challenge Update


On Sunday, June 26, about 20 people - staff, board members, and families - gathered to participate for a second time in the Scotiabank Charity Challenge 5K and half-marathon. This race is a great way for charities to fundraise and participate in a well-organized event. So far this year, we have raised $4,460, which will be used to purchase additional equipment for our NEW PLAYGROUND (rebuild happening in the fall).

If you missed the opportunity to make a donation, don't worry! We can continue to receive donations until July 25. Simply go to our blog and follow the link to donate.

Letter from our Storyteller!
Dear parents and children of the Mount Pleasant Family Centre. As some of you know, I have been commissioned to write a story celebrating MPFC’s 40 years of supporting families in the neighbourhood. The process of researching and interviewing has begun in a lovely way, and a few recent ABC graduates and alumni will be participating in October’s storytelling performance! I look forward to meeting you all then. – Naomi Steinberg, storyteller

Crows Love Strollers
We have a couple of clever crows who regularly steal food out of the strollers parked outside the Family Centre. Please do not leave food in your stroller!

Riding Your Bike to the Drop-In?
Please park and lock your bike on the outside of the fence around the playground. This reduces the congestion around the outdoor play areas.


July Events!

July 1st, Friday: Canada Day The Family Centre will be CLOSED.
July 8 - 29, Fridays: 9:30 - 11:30 AM Friday Morning Drop-Ins During the month of July we are opening on Friday mornings for an additional Family Drop-In! Wow!
July 15th, Friday: 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM Nourishing Family Meals: Dietician Cathy Wang will present tips and answer questions about healthy family eating. Presentation will be downstairs between 10 &11 am. Children will be cared for upstairs.
July 22nd, Friday: 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM Gentle Hatha/Yin Yoga with Nadine. Join us downstairs for a lovely break with some yoga from 10 -11AM.  Children will be cared for upstairs. Please sign up! 

Your Membership Counts! 
Annual membership runs from May 1st to April 30th, and costs $45 per year. Membership fees are a much needed part of our annual revenue and help fund our Family Drop In program, parent education, workshops, special events and seasonal celebrations.

Membership is an integral part of community participation and an effective way to contribute to our sustainability. A Family Membership at the MPFCS is $45.00 per year or 86 cents per week.

If you did not have a membership last year, please go directly to our membership page. To renew your membership please go to CanadaHelps.org. When you visit the Family Centre, you can pay using cash, credit card, or cheque. Please speak to one of our Family Support Workers and they will help you.

Family Day Care Providers and Nannies are asked to request parents of the children in their care to purchase a MPFCS membership.

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On Sunday, June 26, about 20 people - staff, board members, and families - gathered to participate for a second time in the Scotiabank Charity Challenge 5K and half-marathon. This race is a great way for charities to fundraise and participate in a well-organized event. So far this year, we have raised $4,460, which will be used to purchase additional equipment for our NEW PLAYGROUND (rebuild happening in the fall).

We can continue to receive donations until July 25, so if you missed your chance to donate before the run/walk, wait no longer!

Click Here to Donate!

Membership Drive Update
Thanks to all our families who have purchased or renewed their memberships! Your support is greatly appreciated. We need 333 families to purchase/renew their membership in order to meet this part of our fundraising goal.
If you have not yet renewed your membership, you still can do so! The next time you drop in, just bring cash, a cheque, or a credit card with you. Annual memberships are $45 for the year (which breaks down to only 86 cents per week!) and expire at the end of April 2017.

Books for Sale!
We have the distinct pleasure of selling Deborah MacNamara's new book, Rest, Play, Grow. Deborah is senior faculty at the Neufeld institute. The book is based on the popular Neufeld course "Making Sense of Preschoolers" which we offer here at the centre twice a year.
The book is $20, payable by cash or cheque,  Family Centre receives $8 from each sale.
Here's an excerpt of a description of the book from Dr. MacNamara's website:
"Based on science and the relational developmental approach of renowned psychologist and bestselling author Gordon Neufeld, Rest, Play, Grow reveals how adults have a critical role to play in creating the conditions for young children to flourish. This is the story of how young children develop, from their intense need for attachment and the vital importance of play to discipline that preserves growth. Engagingly written, with compassion for its subjects and rich with stories from them and their parents, Rest, Play, Grow will forever change the way you think of the preschoolers in your life."


Scotiabank Charity Challenge: Get Moving and Support the Family Centre!

Here's another way you can support us! Please join the Mount Pleasant Family Centre as we run and walk in the Scotiabank Half-Marathon and 5K. Many of the staff and board members are walking to raise money for our beloved Family Centre. The additional funding we receive can be used for more parent education programs or for improvements to our playground. You know how important these things are for families! We hope you will join our team in support of our commitment to providing safe welcoming spaces for families with little children.

There are two ways you can support us - if you want to get your groove on and join us in the Challenge, go to our website, www.mpfamilycentre.ca and register. Use the code16VMPFC to receive a discounted registration fee.

If you are unable to join us in the walk/run, you can go to our website,www.mpfamilycentre.ca and make a donation. 100% of your donation goes to support the Mount Pleasant Family Centre Society.

Special Thanks to Carrie!
Carrie Cassidy has been with us Mondays - Wednesdays since the beginning of April as a Counselling Practicum student. We value her sensitive support for parents, as well as her willingness to share her  expertise and connections to resources for Atypical children. Carrie will be here until mid-June, so be sure to drop in and wish her well on her journey into counselling!

And now, on to June...
June 7, Tuesday: 1 - 3 PM ABC Time On this Tuesday afternoon, we will close off part of our playroom to run a small kindergarten readiness program. The drop-in is still open, but the play space is smaller! For more information about our ABC program, please speak with Ewa or Maria.
June 14, Tuesday: Both Morning & Afternoon Drop-Ins Graduation Day This is the day we celebrate all the children who will be attending kindergarten in the fall! We hold a ceremony outside in the grass and each "graduate" is recognized. The drop-in will still be open to the public, but play time will be shorter. There will be many people attending and more time for sitting still. This might not be the best day for families with very small children to attend. If you have a child entering kindergarten who regularly comes to the Family Centre, please check with Maria or Ewa to find out more details.
June 17 & 24, Fridays: 9:30 - 11:30 AM Family Daycare Mornings Family daycare providers are welcome to bring their kids for a special morning of playtime just for them! Please sign up in advance with Ewa or Maria.
June 30, Thursday: 10:00 - 1 PM Canada Day Celebration Please come for a fun morning of Canada Day activities! There will be crafts, face painting, cow milking demonstrations from BC Dairies, a parade, singing the national anthem, and more! We will be selling food, so bring a bit of money to spend, too! The regular morning drop in, and the afternoon baby drop-in will be closed for this event. 

Outdoor Fun  We continue to encourage parents to enjoy outdoor play with their children. Our bikes, cars and diggers are available from 9-3:30, 9-noon on Thursday. Now that we are getting more sun, please remember that we have a shady yard with blankets and toys for cooler fun!

Riding Your Bike to the Drop-In?
Please park and lock your bike on the outside of the fence around the playground. This reduces the congestion around the outdoor play areas.


Looking Ahead to July...
July 8 - 29, Fridays: 9:30 - 11:30 AM Friday Morning Drop-Ins During the month of July we are opening on Friday mornings for an additional Family Drop-In! Wow!


Annual membership runs from May 1st to April 30th, and costs $45 per year (which averages out to only 86 cents a week). Membership fees are a much needed part of our annual revenue and help fund our Family Drop In program, parent education, workshops, special events and seasonal celebrations. Membership is an integral part of community participation and an effective way to contribute to our sustainability. Our goal is to have 333 memberships paid for this year!

If you did not have a membership last year, please go directly to our membership page. To renew your membership please go to CanadaHelps.org. When you visit the Family Centre, you can pay using cash, credit card, or cheque. Please speak to one of our Family Support Workers and they will help you.


Literacy Through Music Teacher
Mount Pleasant Family Centre Society is pleased to be accepting applications for the Literacy Through Music Teacher position. The Literacy Through Music Teacher provides a singing and music program as an enhancement for the literacy efforts in our Family Drop-In. The participants will be children ranging in age from birth to 5 years and their adults. As this program will be part of our regular drop-in, the participants will not be registered.

For more information, please visit our job posting. To apply for this position, please submit your cover letter and resume by Friday, May 6 to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Family Drop-In Team Lead.


Get Moving and Support the Family Centre!

Please join the Mount Pleasant Family Centre as we run and walk in the Scotiabank Half-Marathon and 5K. We hope you will join our team in support of our commitment to providing safe welcoming spaces for families with little children.

There are two ways you can support us - if you want to get your groove on and join us in the Challenge, go to our website, www.mpfamilycentre.ca and register. Use the code16VMPFC to receive a discounted registration fee.

If you are unable to join us in the walk/run, you can go to our website,www.mpfamilycentre.ca and make a donation. 100% of your donation goes to support the Mount Pleasant Family Centre Society.

 

Goodbye Sarah
Mount Pleasant Family Centre Society is known and respected in the community for our innovative and professional work. However, we are much than a place for programs….we are a place for people and not just any people, but caring, kind, enthusiastic people including Sarah Holcomb, our Family Drop in Team Lead and Family Support Worker.

It is with sadness and also appreciation that I am announcing that as of July , Sarah and her family are moving away from Vancouver and onto new life experiences and adventures. During Sarah’s time at Mount Pleasant Family Drop in, Sarah has given generously of herself and sincerely supported the success of the organization through her excellent leadership, her willingness to tackle new projects and her keen interest in exploring new skills. In addition, Sarah has helped to develop our very successful annual fundraiser, Savour Our Neighbourhood, hosting the event for two years running, and hopefully back as our guest host in 2017!

Sarah has become a good friend to all who have had the pleasure of working with her and I know our Board and our participant families will miss her friendly face and warm welcome!

Please join us in wishing Sarah and her family all the best on their new adventures and let her know she will be remembered!
Gini Bonner
Executive Director MPFCS

On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to give Sarah a heartfelt thank you for being such a wonderful presence at the Family Centre. She was a big part in making Savour Our Neighbourhood successful, helped design our Strategic Planning process, increased our social media presence, and was a pleasure to work with.

I know we parents will all miss our time with Sarah at the drop-in – her upbeat presence, way of connecting with the children, compassion and sense of humour. I personally always appreciated having conversations with Sarah about parenting. She has slightly older children, which means she remembers those toddler and preschool years well, and also has insight into the next stage of parenting! Always valuable.

Thank you for all the baby-holding, zippers zipped up, shoes put on, and meltdowns soothed. We will miss you!
Marnie Watson
Chair of the Board of Directors, MPFCS


And now, on to May!

April 30 - June 18, Saturdays: 10 - 11:30 AM 1-2-3 Jump! Physical Literacy for 2.5 - 3.5 yr olds. Have fun with your child moving and learning in new ways. Registration is required.The program is offered free in partnership with Little Mountain Neighbourhood House. We ask that you have a current Family Centre membership to participate. This session is full, but please speak with Flora to put your names on a contact list for the next session.
May 2 - 5:Mother's Day Fun! All week in the playroom there will be special Mother's Day crafts
May 3 - June 7, Tuesdays: 1 - 3 PM ABC Time On these Tuesday afternoons, we close off part of our playroom to run a small kindergarten readiness program. The drop-in is still open, but the play space is smaller! For more information about our ABC program, please speak with Ewa or Maria.
May 5, Thursday: Morning Drop-In Toddler Round-UpIf you have questions about your child's health and development, Public Health Nurses will be available during the morning drop in to address your concerns. If your child will be attending the drop-in with a grandparent or other caregiver, a release form must be signed before the nurses can interact with your child. Release forms are available at the Family Centre.
May 5, Thursday: End of Morning Drop-In Storytime with the VPL Librarian Come meet our librarian and enjoy songs, rhymes, and stories!
May 8, Sunday:Mother's Day a very good day to honor all the influential women in your life!
May 12, Thursday: Morning Drop-In Dental Screening Our dental nurse will be available to look at and teach you how to brush your child's teeth! Receive a free toothbrush and dental health information. Please attend!
May 23, Monday:Victoria Day Holiday The Family Centre will be CLOSED.
May 26, Thursday: Baby Drop-In Dental Screening Our dental nurse will be available to talk about healthy mouth care for infants. Please attend!

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Our Family Centre facilitated two field trips last month for both the MPFC member families and the refugee families in our Circles of Care and Connection Program thanks to the one-time-only grant from the VCH Population Health Community Investments Team. 

 

20 adults and 31 children from the Circles of Care and Connection Early Years Refugee Program and 17 adults and 22 children from Mount Pleasant Family Centre (total 37 adults and 53 children) attended the Science World Field trip. A special bubble show was set up for our families by Science World. There were lots of activities and exhibits for the parents and children to participate in.

 

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Here is some feedback that we heard :  “we always saw this place from the skytrain but never knew what it was, we appreciate you bringing us”, “we would not have been able to afford this on our own”, “it is nice to get away from the everyday stress and enjoy family time-thank you”, “we enjoy the field trips CCC does for us as it would be difficult on our own”, “the children loved today and we also got to play”.

 

The trip to the Vancouver Aquarium was attended by 34 adults and 40 children. As a way of connecting the families from both programs, we passed out single playing cards, to be matched up with the same  card number. This resulted in a few families getting together and sharing stories. Some families met at lunch time to visit and many families traveled home together on transit.

 

The families again gave great feedback, such as: “I have walked by this place many times but could not go in as it was difficult to afford, I am so happy that I get to take my family today”. The families enjoyed a packed lunch and got to see some great shows, the weather was perfect and some families stayed and spent the day by the water.

 

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This grant created opportunities for the refugee families and our local member families to participate in organized field trips together, facilitating enhanced social integration and mutual cultural understanding.

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We are gathering a team of passionate supporters to run or walk 5K or run a half-marathon on Sunday, June 26, 2010 to help us raise awareness of the support we give to families with young children and raise money for a new playground designed specifically for very young children. The Mount Pleasant Family Centre has been providing support and education to families with young children for forty years! What a great time to celebrate!

This is our second year to participate in the Scotiabank Charity Challenge and we would love for you to join this year’s team.

You don’t have to be an athlete to join. In fact, almost half our team has never run a marathon before. Only a few on our team have ever fundraised before either.

All you need is a passion for healthy families, because that’s what unites us as a team and carries us all over the finish line!
When you join our team, you get access to:
• Fundraising tools, ideas, tips and training
• Team photos and race day photos
• Team spirit and camaraderie
• The heartfelt gratitude of families with young children that you’re literally stepping up for

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Click here to register!

If you are unable to join us, please consider making a donation!

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Mount Pleasant Family Centre invites families with children 0 to 6 years old to become a member. Members are entitled to free drop-in programming, a supervised playroom, a comfortable space for adults to talk and meet other parents and caregivers, and much more.

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