Hope & Area Transition Society logo

Hope & Area Transition Society logo

Group helping the marginalized closes Aug. 31

Doors close as funding dries up, said executive director Gerry Dyble.

The Hope and Area Transition Society will close the HOPE (Helping Others Pursue Excellence) Project Adult Day Program on Aug. 31, according to a press release.

The program, which helps improve the lives of marginalized Hope residents through employment, educational activities and other assistance, started in 2013 and will fold next month due to a lack of grant funding.

“The closure of this project is devastating,” wrote program coordinator Allison Paterson. “It means the displacement of a large number of community members who are already marginalized and oppressed due to poverty, addictions and mental health conditions.

“It means an end to vital social and health supports being more easily accessible to many who live in isolation and poverty who have accessed this project thereby adding purpose and meaning to their lives and improving living standards.”

Grants from community organizations, with the society putting in a portion of its funds, paid for the program for the past two years. However, since April, the society has been funding the project by itself — an unsustainable model, said executive director Gerry Dyble.

“This year I was unable to secure funding through grants and I’ve gone to Fraser Health who had indicated that they’re putting $500,000 into the community to address health indicators,” said Dyble. “As of now, we haven’t heard where Fraser Health is putting that $500,000.”

According to the press release, the program supports people address issues that lead them to “chronic and debilitating health and social issues,” as well as offer a “safe environment for those who may have otherwise loitered on the streets of Hope, panhandled and/or engaged in criminal activity.”

“Hope has significant socio-economic issues which makes accessing services out of the community virtually impossible, therefore people are left isolated and alone,” said Dyble. “The HOPE Project was that light in the lives of many people and it makes me sad to have to close these doors on the most vulnerable in our community.”

Dyble said she is forced to provide notice to her staff, but is still hoping that Fraser Health comes through with its funding.

“We can’t continue to fund it any longer,” she said.

Its range of activities include art and crafts, helping people access health services and tax filing, educational and employment assistance.

“This past year, Disability Alliance BC came to the project and completed taxes for over 10 people and filed 25 years of taxes which resulted in back taxes, GST and Child Tax Credits payable to the clients,” wrote program coordinator Paterson.

They furthered that, on average, the HOPE Project has provided service to 24 clients daily and in the last quarter there were 1,106 visits to the site, approximately 20 per cent of those visits were from Aboriginal people.

Dyble added that the society will continue running the outpatient addictions clinic, which provides counselling, funded by Fraser Health.

As for the adult day program, Dyble said nothing is coming to fill the void.

“Doors are closing, and that’s it,” she said.

Just Posted

Chilliwack potter Cathy Terepocki (left) and Indigenous enhancement teachers Val Tosoff (striped top) and Christine Seymour (fuchsia coat), along with students at Vedder middle school, look at some of the 500-plus pinch pots on Thursday, June 10 made by the kids to honour the 215 children found at Kamloops Indian Residential School. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Chilliwack students make hundreds of tiny clay pots in honour of 215 Indigenous children

‘I think the healing process has begun,’ says teacher about Vedder middle school project

Dennis Saulnier rescued his daughters, two-year-old Brinley (left) and four-year-old Keegan, after their truck was driven off the road and into Cultus Lake on May 16, 2020. Reporter Jenna Hauck has been recognized by the B.C. and Yukon Community Newspapers Association for her story on the rescue. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)
Chilliwack Progress, Hope Standard staff take home 7 Ma Murray awards

Jenna Hauck, Eric Welsh, Jessica Peters, Emelie Peacock all earn journalism industry recognition

(Unsplash.com)
Protecting our elders: It’s up to all of us to look out for them

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) is June 15

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay
Webinar looks at sexual abuse prevention among adolescents

Vancouver/Fraser Valley CoSA hosts free online session on June 15

June is Brain Injury Awareness Month in Canada. (ADOBE STOCK IMAGE)
Shining a light on brain injury in Canada

June is Brain Injury Awareness Month

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Police cars are seen parked outside Vancouver Police Department headquarters on Saturday, January 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police officer charged with assault during an arrest in 2019

The service has released no other details about the allegations

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Christian Eriksen in stable condition, Euro 2020 match resumes

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Nathan Watts, a member of the Tseshaht First Nation near Port Alberni, shares his story of substance use, a perspective he said isn’t seen enough. (Photo courtesy of Nathan Watts)
Public shaming, hate perpetuates further substance use: UVic researcher

Longtime addict Nathan Watts offers a user’s perspective on substance use

Most Read