After a successful partnership between UGM & Quest Outreach Society spanning a decade, Quest will be moving on from renting UGM’s 611 E Hastings location this June.
“Quest has benefited from a generous and resilient working relationship with UGM for the past 10 years.” Theo Lamb, the Executive Director of Quest Food Exchange shares. “We will be working with all our community partners, including UGM, to ensure we are able to continue to serve the DTES community and ensure affordable access to groceries and food.”
“Combating food insecurity collaboratively with Quest Outreach Society through this close partnership has highlighted the synergy between our organizations,” Bill Mollard, UGM’s President says. “We are grateful to continue our shared journey of providing dignity to members of the Downtown Eastside, even if we are no longer next door neighbors.”
The importance of a dignified shopping experience for community members, as well as the valued relationship between Quest Outreach Society and UGM, means that Quest will be able to remain at 611 E Hastings should finding space become a challenge until they find a viable alternative in the DTES.
What’s next for 611 E Hastings?
“We often talk about ending poverty, homelessness and addiction one life at a time, at UGM. Our Social Enterprise opportunities provide community members with training and employment opportunities” says Mollard.
Repair to Wear, a UGM Social Enterprise, is a program that employs dozens of self-identified women on an annual basis, providing low-barrier employment. They learn hand and machine sewing skills while earning a market-based wage, while being in a safe space for community and personal development.
Repair to Wear has seen continual growth and success over the last few years and as a result have outgrown the space that was originally allocated for them in UGM’s new Women & Families Centre.
“We anticipate that this program will keep growing in the coming years, and will need more space,” Mollard shares, “The location at 611 E Hastings is a natural fit for the growing R2W Program and we are excited for them to start moving in and operating out of the space later this year.”
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