The Island Crisis Care Society, together with B.C. Housing, have received a grant that will allow the ‘Handmade for Hope’ program to operate at Orca Place in Parksville, although not in the space they originally intended.
The organizations had hoped to run the small craft-making business for residents out of the space formerly designed as a temporary shelter, but use of the area is subject to approval of Parksville city council.
Council voted against its use at the Nov. 18 council meeting.
Corrie Corfield of the ICCS says though they’ll have to adapt a little bit, the program will still be able to go through.
“It’ll be a little bit different then what we had hoped it would be, it will be a little bit smaller in scale, but the focus of the program will still be there, which is very exciting for us, cause we think it is something that will benefit the residents,” said Corfield.
“It’s within our scope as an organization that we can do that, because it’s a training support program for the residents.”
‘Handmade for Hope’ will see Orca Place residents make various handmade items, such as dryer balls, re-usable produce bags, art cards, accessories and more for sale online and at community markets.
Corfield says that the pre-employment skills of the program are important to help people struggling with unemployment ease back into the workforce. The program has been endorsed by the Parksville Career Centre and is for residents only.
“There’s some really great things happening in general with Orca Place… this is just a little piece of it,” said Corfield.