Options Community Services
Options Community Services is a non-profit organization whose mission is to help people help themselves and promote safe, healthy and vibrant communities. Options supports folks living in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, primarily in Surrey, Delta, White Rock and Langley. Options is big – running over 80 programs and projects, employing over 400 staff and mobilizing 300+ volunteers. Services range from early childhood supports, counseling, shelters for youth and abused women, crisis lines, refugee & immigration assistance, social housing for seniors and people living with a disability.
We first got to know Options through a Quick Dive in downtown Surrey, where we spent two weeks meeting residents of a busy social housing complex, Ted Kuhn Towers, and the locals living rough nearby. Through ethnographic research, we identified five opportunity areas. Read the trend report of our Quick Dive here.
In the Fall, we’ll get to know another part of Options – its immigration & refugee services, as we explore what life is like for new Canadians.
North York Community House
North York Community House (NYCH) is a non-profit organization in Northwest Toronto that serves newcomers to Canada, enhancing their strength and resilience. NYCH runs youth leadership programs, supports parents, connects seniors, and engages community.
We embarked on a Quick Dive with NYCH in Spring 2018 to understand the experiences of Filipino youth coming to Canada to reunite with their caregiver parents: what was their transition to Canada like? What is their sense of place and belonging? What is shaping their identity and aspirations? Download the trend report from this Quick Dive here.
Massey Theatre opened in 1949 as British Columbia’s largest theatre! Today, it’s a 1260-seat venue hosting over 200 events each session, offering the community high-quality performance arts and a visual arts gallery. Physically connected to a secondary school, Massey Theatre has played a strong role in the lives of local young people. Over the next three years, the theatre and the school will be re-developed, with the school gaining its own theatre space and program. The physical redesign and refurbishment is an opportunity to rethink the role of a theatre in a local community, and re-imagine how community members engage with the arts.
Our Quick Dive with Massey Theatre was about understanding young people’s relationship to the arts, particularly young people with low emotional well-being. We looked at young people’s sources of esteem and belonging, and the place arts could have over time, as they graduate school and beyond. Watch the video here!