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A Note of Thanks 

Thanks to all the generous people of St Philip’s, this ministry is very successful.

Rhona Thornton, WANM Parish Liaison 

Farewell to Rev. Liz Hamel -

We announce, with regret, that Rev. Liz has decided to resign from her position with the Westside Anglican Neighbourhood Ministry. While we are sad to see her go, she will remain close by as she continues her work with St. Helen’s. We thank Liz for her contributions over the past year and look forward to welcoming her back as one of our volunteers. Her last day will be June 15th. 

Neighbourhood Ministry reopens MCU services at St. Augustine’s

The Mobile Care Unit (MCU) of the Westside Anglicans Neighbourhood Ministry (WANM) has reopened at St. Augustine’s Anglican Church, 8680 Hudson Street, Vancouver (Marpole), offering bi-monthly medical and social services on Thursdays from 5:30pm-7pm. Dr. Stephanie Chu operates the medical services side of the MCU, which offers basic medical services (wound care, diagnosis, preventative care, assistance with disability applications, and referrals for long term or specialty care).  

Summary of the Activities of the Neighbourhood Ministry (May 16 – May 31, 2021) 

The MCU is now operating bi-weekly at St. Augustine’s during their evening meal pickup. As people become used to seeing us there every other week, there is a growing sense of recognition and trust. We are meeting more of the regulars and making connections. We chat with people as they wait in line to pick-up their food, offer sleeping bags to those who need them or help with social service requests. The past two weeks have been very busy, despite one rainy evening! 

WANM Street Outreach Outdoor Report for May 8, 2021

Participants: Peg Gabor & Rhona Thornton

Rhona and Peg met at 9:30 at St Philip’s. There was a Mother’s Day plant sale going on there and the plants looked beautiful! We were happy to receive a blessing from Rev. Philippa. Indoor team member Suzi was busy with both the plant sale and providing us with the packages for distribution, sending us off with lots of nice packets, fresh fruit and lots of other treats. Thanks to Suzi and her daughter Sophia for preparing the packages and thanks to all of the parishioners who donated the supplies.

At the fence we saw T, S, B and D. Sadly, S told us that he and his partner J had split up and he had moved out of their place. We were able to offer him a sympathetic ear, and a beautiful frame backpack and a sleeping bag. D shared with Rhona that he is going to Alberta to see his son soon. Everyone took food. S and D took clothing and baseball caps.

We left a packet at St. Helen’s for B by his neatly folded gear. We drove back down West 4th to Whole Foods where Peg bought a beautiful book of poetry from P.M was in front of Shoppers. He did not want anything, but we talked a bit.

At the VSB park we saw J. He took some food. We saw B in the lane by McDonald’s. He took food and a T-shirt and sweater. He is unhoused and would like to apply for housing. At the Macs we met D, J and H, new to us, older fellows and unhoused. D took a sleeping bag. They all took food and were happy to get an assortment of t-shirts, sweaters, jackets, shoes, underwear, masks and toiletries. C and S were in the storage cube at the vacant lot on West Broadway. They opened the door when we called and were happy to see us. They took food and clothes.S was on the sidewalk at the Shoppers near Broadway and Burrard with his sweet dog Penny and a big cart. He’s seen us before. He was happy to take food.

J, J and C were at Wawanesa. They took food and J got a t-shirt. M was panhandling near London Drugs on Broadway. She took food. We saw P by the Safeway at Broadway and McDonald. He was clean shaven and looked frail. We gave him a rain jacket and the last of the food. 

We handed out all 20 packages. They were gratefully received by our friends on the street. Rhona had pulled lots of clothes and shoes from the bountiful St Philip’s supply. The clothing was also popular. We still have a closet full of clothes so are currently not accepting clothing donations.

Request for Donations

  • Sports socks
  • Fruit cups or sauce
  • Soft protein bars eg Pure Protein
  • Can openers
  • Canned meat and fish
  • Water
  • $10 MacDonald’s gift cards so people can have a hot drink and warm up
  • We are currently NOT accepting any clothing donations as the closet is full, thanks to you.

How is the Neighbourhood Ministry Funded? 

The Westside Anglicans Neighbourhood Ministry (WANM) is a collaborative effort of four Westside Anglican parishes (St. Anselm’s, St. Helen’s, St. John’s Shaughnessy and St. Philip’s), all under the Diocese of New Westminster.

Each church contributes $2,500 annually to the WANM. St. Philip's contribution comes out of the Outreach Budget. The rest of the funding for WANM comes from grants. In 2018 and 2019 this Ministry received a Care and Share grant. In 2020 it received a grant from the City of Vancouver and recently it was awarded $10,000 from the Union Gospel Mission's Christian Leader's Fund. The WANM expenses include, but are not limited to, staffing (last fall a Program and Volunteers Manager, Rev’d Liz Hamel, was hired), office supplies, sleeping bags and other camping gear, Christmas Outreach, individual support (eg moving-in expenses for a client) and funding for meal programs at the Dunbar Apartments.  The food supplies that go out every week are collected by each church individually and mainly donated by their parishioners. St Philip’s also maintains its own separate Neighbourhood Ministry account to fund the purchase of items it may need (protein bars, Ensure, socks, etc.)  

It is especially confusing for parishioners at St Philip’s as the accounting for the WANM is on St Philip’s books. When looking at the St Philip's financial reports, you will see the WANM and the NM reflected in two areas and these are two different pots of money.

Colour photo by Clay LeConeyBlack & white photo by Matt Collamer on Unsplash