Saturday, December 22, 2012

Hope in Shadows the Recipient of a $20,000 award from Telus

A couple of months ago, I had the opportunity to participate in Free the Children's We Day Vancouver as a Telus video blogger behind the scenes & at the big event. LINK It wasn't just a one-day affair--attending students completed social justice & community-building projects in advance of the event to 'earn' their tickets & there are several initiatives continuing on from the event. Telus held a contest starting on We Day, challenging students to come up with the best idea for helping their communities. The kids submitted video proposals to win $20,000 for their project.

This year's Hope in Shadows calendar. They're $20--get one now!
After tons of incredible video submissions, judges Craig Kielburger (founder of Free the Children) & Jill Schnarr (VP Community Engagement at Telus) chose Lindsay Rideout & Chloe Noel's project: expanding the Hope in Shadows program. Lindsay & Chloe are both grade 12 students at Argyle Secondary School in North Vancouver. They have been passionate about Hope in Shadows since the beginning of their school year when they learned about the organization through their Social Justice class at school. Check out Lindsay & Chloe's video submission here

The girls also volunteer serving meals to the homeless every Tuesday night, which is how they got to know some of these people as well as more about the effectiveness of the Hope In Shadows program.

Their class attended We Day Vancouver where they heard about the Telus for We Day contest. Later, with the encouragement of their teacher, the girls made a video on their hopes to expand the Hope in Shadows program into other parts of Vancouver & work with Telus to create more awareness & participation in this great initiative.

Lindsay & Chloe are extremely passionate about these issues & have already been involved in helping Hope in Shadows by sponsoring the Exhibit of Hope event earlier this week where the artwork of the residents of Vancouver’s downtown eastside is displayed and available to order.

If you haven't heard of it before, Hope In Shadows is a charitable organization that works with several non-profits, focusing on Vancouver’s impoverished downtown eastside. Their main project each year is a photography contest & calendar created & coordinated by the Pivot Legal Society. This contest gives low-income residents of the community an opportunity to take pictures with single use cameras, sharing what the community means to them. Of the photos taken, 40 are selected to go into an exhibition, 12 of which are then featured in a calendar.

Selling the Hope in Shadows calendar is not only a way to create profit, but a more dignified, meaningful way of employment for residents--people from the downtown east side can become licensed street vendors & get a decent commission on the sale of every calendar. We always buy one or two every year (they make great last-minute Christmas gifts!).

If you'd like to buy a calendar, there are vendors on the streets everywhere downtown--a good spot to look is at Georgia & Granville. For more info on Hope In Shadows visit

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