Peace and Social Justice

Social Justice 2
Canadian Memorial is an active responder and promoter for peace and social justice in our community and in higher levels of government. Below is a list of some of the programs that we run and organizations that we support:

In from the Cold

 Make an difference in the Downtown Eastside by serving a hot meal at First United Church on the second Friday of every month from 3:30-7:30 pm. Volunteers cook a meat or veggie stew, set-up, and serve those in need of a nourishing meal.

On the second Friday of the month, volunteers from Canadian Memorial prepare and serve a nutritious beef or vegetarian stew dinner topped off with a dessert of chocolate cake or cookies and ice cream. Live music, laughter and stories punctuate the evening and everyone leaves the event feeling full and cared for.

More information about First United Mission can be found at www.firstunited.ca

Please download the stew recipe Stew_Recipes_In_From_the_Cold and place stews in the ice cream buckets provided at the church office. We ask that the stews and/or cookies be dropped off to the Centre for Peace kitchen on the day of the serving.

If you think this is something you would like to get involved with, please contact Heather McKelvie at 604-773-7744.

Street Meals

Street Meals is an outreach ministry that has been supporting street-involved youth in Vancouver with a hot meal and sandwich program since 2000. Street Meals provides food, clothes, and scholarships to street-involved youth.

In partnership with Directions Youth Services Centre, operated by Family Services of Greater Vancouver, our volunteers provide lunches for the Street Youth Job Action program. We also contribute goods and products, such as soap, socks, sleeping bags, and regular deliveries of milk etc., and a whole range of items which have been identified as needed by the staff at Directions.

We meet one Saturday morning a month to carry out all this work. To get involved, call Joanne Hausch, 604-454-7446.

What is the Canadian Memorial Street Meals Scholarship Fund?

In 2008 we established the scholarship fund to provide financial assistance to students who are training for a career in youth services. This education will prepare youth to assist street-involved and at-risk youth to move forward in life, with the appropriate support, resources and direction. We have established a scholarship fund to help students to further their academic goals, but also to encourage them to give back to their clients who so need professional help and support. Note that preference is given to students with a past history of street involvement or high risk and who are currently enrolled in a program that will lead to a degree or certification in youth services.

Want to gain insight into what it is like to be young and on the street? Vancouver homeless youth have chosen to speak out and answer these questions, firsthand. Their stories, as filmed by the youth themselves and without interpreters, are now available on a ground-breaking new website, www.inourshoes.ca.

Reconciliation Seekers

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada released its final report in December 2015, and The United Church of Canada continues to engage with and respond to the 94 Calls to Action. In particular, we pay special attention to Call to Action #59:

59. We call upon church parties to the Settlement Agreement to develop ongoing education strategies to ensure that their respective congregations learn about their church’s role in colonization, the history and legacy of residential schools, and why apologies to former residential school students, their families, and communities were necessary.

Also important in our work is Call to Action #48, which applies specifically to churches:

48. We call upon the church parties to the Settlement Agreement, and all other faith groups and interfaith social justice groups in Canada who have not already done so, to formally adopt and comply with the principles, norms, and standards of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as a framework for reconciliation.

The Reconciliation Seekers at Canadian Memorial are called to consider what Reconciliation means to us and our community and to promote it whenever possible. We meet regularly to discuss our journey towards Reconciliation, and we regularly plan speakers and activities that are open to the wider community. We also strive to promote local First Nations events where appropriate. Contact Hilary Kitson for more information.

Affirm United

As an open-minded, open-hearted community, we welcome people of all sexual and gender identities and encourage their full participation in our church life. In June 2018, Canadian Memorial resoundingly voted yes to joining the Affirming Ministries network after an intentional year of reflection and education on what it means to be fully inclusive of LGBTQ2SIA  people. Becoming Affirming was an explicit show of our belief that all sexual orientations and gender identities are part of God’s divine plan and gift of diversity in humanity. It is a public affirmation to let the wider community know that we are a safe place not only for LGBTQ2SIA refugees, immigrants, and Canadians, but also for their families, friends and allies to find a place to belong and a home to worship in. For more information on our Affirm process and commitment to this, check out our Affirm page.

The Township Project

Assist in fundraising to support a micro-finance project that lends money to women living in South African townships who want to start their own small business. Jocelyn Pritchard.

Canadian Peace Initiative

This initiative works towards establishing a federal-level Department of Peace,  while creating a culture of peace at home and abroad. We advocate for non-violent conflict resolution, and the revitalization of Canada’s role as a global peace-builder.  Email vancouvercpi(at)yahoo.ca or find more information at canadianpeaceinitiative.ca