Charity hampered by race for space
Organization needs new warehouse quickly after being knocked off track by Skytrain plans
The new Evergreen line is expected to be a boon to the Tri-cities, but it’s busting up a local charity.
For the past five years, SHARE Family and Community Services have been running their Christmas hamper and toy program — which helps 1,500 needy families and children each year — out of a Port Moody warehouse space donated by Andreas Winery.
But with Skytrain construction looming, the charity has been informed it must vacate the space to make way for a construction staging area as of June 30.
At the moment, it has nowhere else to go.
“It’s been terrific, and we’ve known that a good thing like this can’t last forever. Especially in this region where free real estate is hard to come by,” said SHARE CEO Martin Wyant.
The registered charity has been searching for another space, but it’s on a tight budget and hasn’t met with success.
“We knew those days would be numbered. It leaves us hoping, trying to get creative,” said Wyant.
He is hoping another TriCities business might step up to donate space.
“Maybe there is something sitting around out there that could be used by someone like us to support this kind of work,” Wyant said.
The 40-year-old charity, which has offices in Coquitlam and a food bank in Port Moody, had been using the warehouse to sort hamper and toy items and donations since 2007.
SHARE provided hampers to 1,416 families last year and distributed holiday gifts to 1,654 children in the Tri-cities.
It’s seeking at least a 25,000 to 30,000 square-foot space to sort and store and ship its seasonal hampers and toys, with washrooms for volunteers, and another 5,000 square feet for its year-round food bank program. It would be ideal if both could be accommodated on the same site, but not essential.
“We can split the functions up if we need to,” Wyant said. “We are going to look at every option that comes in front of us. We will find some way of doing this work, we just don’t know what that is.”
Anyone interested in donating new warehouse space to the charity, can call 604529-5126.