You can help the Calgary John Howard Society (CJHS) win $20,000 through the Canada Helps’ Great Canadian Giving Challenge! During the month of June, every $1 donated to CJHS through Canada Helps counts as one ballot to help us win $20,000. (All donations over $3 receive a charitable tax receipt from Canada Helps.)

What can we do with $20,000?

The youth and adults we work with come from backgrounds where poverty, social isolation and lack of family support are commonplace — which is why we incorporate community-building activities into our programming!

Our decade-old agency van, which is the mode of transportation for many of these activities, is on its last legs. With $20,000, we would be able to replace it — ensuring that youth and adults will continue to have access to evidence-based crime prevention programming and alternatives to breaking the law.

What do the youth have to say?

CJHS provides supportive housing for youth ages 15-24 who are experiencing homelessness. The youth at our two residences — Raido House and Windsor Park — are big fans of the van and the activities it takes them to! Here are a few memories from them.

"Every family has a 'family car.' To me, the CJHS van is that vehicle. I've gone on lots of different outings including Calaway Park, a road trip to Edmonton, and simple grocery runs, but my favourite memories are riding in the van itself. Although we (the clients) don't have much, we can still depend on the van to bring us a good time with even better people. Riding in the van is never about the destination, but the journey we're about to go on."
Morgan
CJHS youth resident
"Some of my favourite memories with the van are going on hikes, bowling, and just simple drives. I remember the great music, but also the great people I got to spend the day with. Sometimes the activities didn't matter because I just enjoyed getting in the van and getting to build a sense of community with my housemates."
Colton
CJHS youth resident
"I've traveled to lots of different activities in the CJHS van. One of my most memorable moments was horseback riding. I was afraid of horses so it was a great learning experience and I had lots of fun overcoming that fear. Another one of my favourite memories was going to play laser tag. Even though we got stuck in traffic and had to make some last-minute changes to the plan, the good company and music made it a fun-packed day. The little hiccup just made it more memorable."
Madison
CJHS youth resident

A safer Calgary

When youth and adults involved in crime feel like part of the community, they feel more responsibility to that community. Engaging with individuals at risk on a community-based level helps to develop life and social skills, reduce isolation and prevent crime, making Calgary a safer city for everyone. Donate today to help us provide safe, reliable and affordable transportation for youth and adults who are making positive changes and moving away from criminal behaviour!

*Donations must be made through Canada Helps

**Photos are illustrations