As reported in the Times Colonist March 19th, 2017. See the TC page online.
By Gillian Hoyer
As many of us were chalking our doors and praying for our homes and churches in the days around Epiphany, another important house blessing was occurring in the diocese. On January 4, Bishop Logan McMenamie presided at the blessing of Threshold House, the fourth and newest home opened in Victoria by the Threshold Housing Society (see November 2016 issue of The Diocesan Post for more about the Grand Opening).
A ministry of the Diocese of British Columbia, the first of Threshold Housing Society’s homes was opened 25 years ago. Through the faithful giving of Anglicans to “Anglicans in Mission” (and later to the “Anglican Appeal”), our diocese was able to hire Church Army chaplain, Rick Sandberg. Together, Rick Sandberg and a group of concerned Anglican parishioners in the Greater Victoria region provided the inspiration for establishing Threshold Housing Society.
Because of this strong relationship with the Diocese of British Columbia, each of Threshold’s houses has been blessed by the bishop. Bishop Barry Jenks remembers blessing Threshold’s first house, Mitchell House for young men, when it opened in 1992. He was also there for the opening and blessing of Threshold’s second house, Holly House for young women, which opened in 1997. Bishop Logan blessed the third house, Forrest House, upon its opening in 2014.
Threshold Housing is grateful to receive the City of Victoria’s Permissive Tax Exemption.
This exemption is for non-profit organizations to encourage the construction of new affordable rental housing among other purposes within our community, all geared towards improving the housing safety and availability in Victoria.
Assistance like this three year exemption from the city is vital to the long term sustainability of our organization as well as being a wonderful acknowledgement of the value Threshold offers to the Victoria community overall.
The scene at Gorge-ous Coffee on Saturday January 14th was a true example of a village coming together and creating something amazing. 14 musicians, an engaged local community, and of course expertly brewed coffee came together and raised $2090.70 for the youth of Threshold Housing Society.
Dozens of people worked together to create this event who all deserve our heartfelt thanks (along with several hundred people who visited and donated generously), but a few special shout outs.
Robbie Hancock, a recent addition to the Victoria but a veteran of the Canadian music scene made all of this happen. From connecting with Leslie and Jim, the owners of Gorge-ous Coffee, to pulling together over a dozen Victoria musicians, to co-MC’ing the event, none of this would have been possible without the passionate work of Robbie. Please support him by following him on Facebook and visiting Robbie’s website.
This coming Saturday, January 14, 2017, a Canadian musician named Robbie Hancock will be holding a day-long music-fest at Gorge-ous Coffee which is located at 103-300 Gorge Rd W (Gorge Rd at Tillicum). There are approximately 20 committed local musicians planning to play from about noon to 10:00pm. All proceeds and donations will go to THS.
Robbie’s website is a great source of information. He is an accomplished musician with a heart for youth issues. He held this type of fundraiser in London, Ontario for a youth organization for several years before moving to Victoria.
The line up for Saturday is spectacular!
Recently due to help from a few organizations, Threshold Housing Society has had the opportunity this holiday season to gain some great visibility. Today we had a full page ad in the Times Colonist letting Victoria know that we are able to take text donations. Additionally we went a bit more old school and circulated 1000 holiday card packages to select neighbours in Oak Bay.
This increased visibility is vital to the sustainability of Threshold Housing. In the last 4 years we have seen the organization grow several fold from 9 youths housed to 36 since September. We are pleased to be working to assist vulnerable youth especially with the unfortunate increases in demand. But we can’t do it alone.