This year, the kind folks at CIBC donated many wonderful gifts for the children of our families who have come to Canada as refugees. In the picture above, the children at ISS Welcome House (where many of the government assisted refugees arrive) created a beautiful thank you card which was handed over from the Circles of Care and Connection staff to Ivan from CIBC.
Mount Pleasant Family and Centre and Circles of Care & Connection Early Years Refugee Program have received numerous phone calls and messages from our families and neighbours wanting to find out how they can help refugees in Vancouver. It is so great to be part of such a welcoming community! Circles of Care & Connection Early Years Refugee Program aims to bridge the gap that refugee families may experience in accessing services within their communities and shortening the pathway between arrival and integration. CCC is a small grass roots organization operating out of very limited space and so, would welcome your financial donations. You can click the button below to make a charitable donation to CCC.
If you have items to donate, the following agencies are accepting donations for the Syrian Refugee Crisis. Each location may have limited storage capacities. Please contact them directly to make sure what kind of items they can accept.
Circles of Care & Connection Early Years Refugee Program Families Visit the Vancouver Farmers' MarketsOctober 22, 2015
Thirty five CCC families (42 parents and 34 children) had a fun and fruitful Saturday morning on October 17th at the Trout Lake Farmers' Market. Each family received $75 in special coupons to buy locally grown food. They left the market with bags full of fresh fruit, vegetables, eggs, fish, and meat. It was wonderful to see so many happy faces and to hear comments such as "This reminds me of home. We did not know that there are markets like this here in Vancouver". These nice memories and feelings of familiarity and belonging are precious for everyone, especially for refugee families. Some participants were surprised to discover that there is a real lake in Vancouver and said that they would visit Trout Lake again. This trip was organized after our first successful visit to the Mount Pleasant Farmers' Market's Fall Fair. On a sunny Sunday morning on October 4th twenty three CCC families (30 parents and 33 children) came to the Fall Fair where children enjoyed a pumpkin patch, wheel of fortune, face painting and other fall activities while parents were buying fresh farm products.
The Farmers Market Nutrition Coupon Program is an initiative of the BC Association of Farmers Markets in partnership with farmers' markets and community skill building associations. The program is supported by Healthy Families BC. Thanks to the generous funding received from Whole Foods Market, Circles of Care and Connection and two other Vancouver programs have been able to give coupons to their families with young children this fall. The Fresh to Families project will continue in 2016, and the partnership between Vancouver Farmers Markets, MPFC - Circles of Care and Connection, MOSAIC, VCH Healthiest Babies Possible Program and Public Health Dietitians, has the goal to secure funding to expand the current number of families receiving the nutrition coupons in Vancouver. While supporting local farming (every dollar spent goes back to farmers), the Coupon Program enables lower-income BC families to purchase locally grown, fresh food.
We are very excited to announce that beginning in September, we will be opening the playroom on Thursday afternoons for a Baby Drop-In. All parents with babies under one year old are welcome to attend this drop-in focused on babies only. Together we will explore their needs and developmental stages and learn ways to support babies' healthy growth through attachment while building parents' confidence through community. No childcare offered for older children.Tell your friends with infants and encourage them to come!
Circles of Care and Connection, the Mount Pleasant Family Centre Society's program for refugee families with young children, is pleased to be part of the new Welcome House being built on Victoria Drive near East 10th Avenue. Ground has been broken, and construction has started!