23 Nov New Hope 2017 Banquet Review: Telling the New Hope Story
A Night Of Hope, Inspiration and A Call To Action
November 6th was New Hope’s annual gala at the Bombay Banquet Centre in Surrey. We called it Telling New Hope Stories and had an amazing evening with good food, fun friends around tables, great stories from our past and present residents, and a challenging appeal to keep the New Hope story going.
There are over 21 Million Refugees Worldwide.
The United Nations has said that there are now over 21 million refugees world wide, and why that number is increasing is due to conflict and turmoil in many areas of the world. At our banquet, we put faces to the crisis and listened to the stories of current and past residents of New Hope.
Throughout the night we heard some heartbreaking, inspiring and hopeful stories from our current and graduated residents from New Hope. All residents are referred to by their initial to keep their privacy.
We heard a story from K. who came from Swaziland 10 years ago. K. arrived at New Hope with nothing more than a suitcase. She is now studying to be a nurse.
H. told a harrowing story of being confronted at gunpoint in his middle eastern city because, as a television reporter, he had named names, shown photos, detailed activities of terrorist activities in his country. He, his wife and their four-year-old daughter were threatened. It was then that he knew that he had “get out of Dodge” and came to Canada to restart his life in 2016 with New Hope.
R.’s story surrounds her coming to Canada with her husband and four children after seven years of living in a refugee camp in Kenya. They arrived to New Hope in the summer of 2016. This past spring she and her husband suffered a miscarriage. It was the women who live in the New Hope residential community that provided her support and care in her loss. No one spoke her language, but hugs don’t need vocabulary to be understood. In the summer of 2017, her husband secured employment and stabilized income, allowing them to start their own life in a three-bedroom apartment. A success story!
A.’s story of losing his home to bombing in Syria, and being forced to flee to Lebanon next door. He and his family of six lived in a four-metre x four-metre room for two years. He had odd jobs as a carpenter to help support his family. Then, in July 2017 he was given the opportunity to come to Canada–a land that, in his mind, was far away. All A. wanted to do was go back to Syria and resume his career as a farmer growing crops. Ultimately, his friends fin convinced him Canada was a good place, and he has been with his family at New Hope since August.
We pre-sold 144 seats at the banquet and had 136 people show up – a 95% turnout rate! Next year we’re aiming for 200! We asked for help and received just over $41,000 from people that evening and the week afterwards.
It’s always such a blessing to see so many involved and passionate people within the community. We were blown away with the generosity of everyone who came. We are so grateful and humbled by your donations. Personal thank you cards for donors are coming this week.
We are ALWAYS 100% full at New Hope. In fact, whenever a client graduates, there are usually 6-10 applications from deserving individuals and families for the space. As of now, we have 13 units and are eagerly looking to expand in order to provide the service of New Hope to deserving people. Our goal is to add a second building in 2018. In order to reach our goal and provide meaningful lives in Canada to more refugees, we need to raise an additional $35,000 by the end of the year. This will help us break even, which is the perfect sweet spot for a not-for-profit. Any monies above that amount will be put towards expansion. If you want to give directly to expansion, feel free to do so.
Do you want to give the gift of a new life to those torn from their homes? If you weren’t able to attend the banquet or provide a donation, but still want to give to the cause, please click here to donate.
Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!
Special thanks to our board members who brought along a table of friends–Jack Taylor, Mike Little, Jay Spiro, Rod Ross, Khosie Mvambela, Marj Busse, Brian Weir, Shannon Tito, Ryan Lermitte, and Justin Vaughan.
Thank you also to our corporate sponsors–Mayor Linda Hepner (Surrey), Van City, Pamela Steunenberg (ReMax Realty), David Smith Homes, Sherman Foster (Homelife Benchmark Realty), and three individual corporate sponsors (anonymous).
Special thanks to Rose Woller (staff) and Shaley Hoogendoorn (Messy Beauty With Shaley — Event Planning) for their behind the scenes tireless work. Great job.
And thank you if you were part of the evening. We had an amazing time and you helped to make it happen. If you didn’t get a chance to come out, we’ll do another gala event next fall and would love to see you there.