Providence in the Park: Continuing our tradition of outreach in the Downtown East Side Community
We couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful day to host this year’s 43rd Providence in the Park, a bi-annual PHC community outreach initiative, at Oppenheimer Park!
On Friday April 14th volunteers from across Providence Health Care gathered at Oppenheimer Park to connect with community members, foster relationships and work together to bring care services and gifted personal care items to the community.
Over 300 community members visited the event this year and they were welcomed with sunshine, smiling volunteers and some incredible resources, including:
PHC’s Food Services Team provided a warm pancake breakfast to all, complete with a banana, juice box and a slice of dessert loaf.
Oppenheimer Park Field House staff provided warm beverages throughout the event offering free coffee, tea and hot chocolate.
Our Community Bikes Repair Clinic was open for business.
Hope to Health’s Research Team shared materials about hepatitis C and provided first aid kits, warm socks and snacks.
Clearly® offered quick vision scans and provided free reading glasses and sunglasses.
PHC’s Overdose Prevention Site Team (OPS) distributed naloxone kits and provided education.
The Vancouver DUDES Club provided information about their brotherhood, offered smudging and helped keep the park clean throughout the event.
Community Veterinary Outreach Team provided information on pet health services and provided free pet food and supplies.
Vancouver Coastal Health hosted two booths, one for COVID-19 vaccinations/boosters, and also had the VCH Overdose Outreach Team on hand with narcan, pamphlets and more snacks!
Corporate sponsors, like Shoppers Drug Mart and Nature’s Path, helped provide the contents for gift bags to community members that contained a pair of socks, a personal care toiletry kit, a box of cereal, a juice box and a lot of granola bars.
The PHC Mission Team also donated over 120 warm jackets to community members for the rain that was sure to come.
For many, Providence in the Park is the embodiment of living the Providence Mission and being driven by compassionate care and social justice. Through the generosity of giving their time and talents, our event volunteers and partners enabled us to strengthen our relationship with the Downtown Eastside Community. The outreach event brought people together to engage in caring conversation and create new friendships. It was certainly a wonderful way to connect with community, each other and enjoy the sunshine!
And that’s not all, in the end, volunteers gifted A LOT of items to the community:
350 breakfasts were served
250 gift bags provided (containing a box of cereal, pair of new socks, a bar of soap, tooth paste, tooth brush, hand sanitizer, shampoo, lip balm, Kleenex, hand cream, juice box, and granola bars.)
400 boxes of cereal
1250 granola bars
300+ pairs of socks
120+ rain jackets
100+ pairs of shoes
500+ new sweatshirts, t-shirts, toques and baseball hats.
200+ sunglasses and reading glasses
5 Covid Vaccines
75 First Aid Kits
15 loaves of Bread
35 Bags of Pet Food
Thank you again to our marvellous volunteers. Without your generosity, Providence in the Park would not have been such a success!
A special shout-out is also needed for the wonderful SPH Stores team who made setup possible by picking up and delivering items the morning of the event.
And finally, thank you to our amazing event sponsors who helped make all this possible.