Small Ideas: $10,000

Description

Unionville Presbyterian Community Church (UPC) became aware that there is a serious lack of services to many of the marginalized groups in our community. We are connecting with many organizations to establish us as a community hub.
Our engagement with the Aids Committee of York Region has expanded from Christmas support, to hosting a dinner for their clients and will hopefully grow to include a summer bar-b-q. UPC has won an award as one of the best community supporters for this organization.
We offer English and a Second Language courses for local residents at not cost. These twice a week classes are at capacity.
Through our connection with Chinese Family Services of Ontario we have just started offering recent immigrants group, family and individual counselling to help address both social, familial and mental health issues. CFSO is using our facilities at no cost to reach the high density of Chinese immigrants in the immediate neighbourhood of UPC.
We are now connected with the World Parkinson’s program to offer weekly exercise and well being workshop. UPC bears all the cost of hosting this program to make it fully accessible. The class is growing and becoming more well known. Information is being distributed to local doctors specializing in Parkinson’s.
CHATS has recently decided to use UPC as one of their locations for a support group for caregivers with monthly meetings starting in November.
UPC is offering assistance to Evergreen Hospice in the creation of a Compassionate Community model here in Markham. This model will bring up to 150 different organizations (including businesses, social service agencies, neighbourhood support groups, volunteer organizations, charitable organizations including churches, mosques, temples and synagogues) creating a network of compassionate support to families and individuals in need. UPC will host the first meeting of these organizations in November.
We host an average of 50 Chinese seniors weekly for the “Happy and Healthy Mandarin Seniors Club of Markham. These seniors gather for traditional songs, dances, conversations, and other activities. A smaller group gathers for similar informal educational activities including photography, art history, Chinese calligraphy and other educational events the group is interested in.
We also started an ENJOY group (Embracing and Nurturing Just Older Youth). This group meets over lunch provided by UPC and provides a forum for both human connection and discussion of issues facing seniors.
We are providing the programs above to anyone from the community regardless of age, race, gender, sexual orientation or religious background. With our connections to multiple local agencies, we see our role as growing significantly over the next year as the programs offered become more widely known and new ones are added.
Not only are these programs open to community members who need them, but we will be seeking community volunteers to help us deliver them.
Many of the people who participate in these programs have mobility issues. With the significant increase in the number of people using our facilities, and as we offer these programs at no cost, we are struggling to keep the building infrastructure up to par.
Specifically, the concrete slabs leading to our front door have sunk, leaving an even surface that is a trip hazard for people with mobility issues. These need to be repoured to prevent injury.
Also, our front doors are heavy, metal double doors. We do not currently have accessible automatic door openers. Anyone who has an assistive device for walking or who is too weak to pull on the doors has to wait outside until someone opens the doors for them. We want to restore their dignity by providing automatic accessible door openers.

The costs for the project are as follows:
Concrete slabs $2,500
Install automatic accessible door openers doors $15,000, electrical $500
The cost of the project: $18,000

Estimate 7800 ppl/year

Broker supported
BUCKLER INSURANCE SERVICE LTD.
National Truck League Insurance Brokers Inc.

Unionville Presbyterian Church

Location: Markham