Fundraising begins for Many Hands Resource Centre

Many Hands Resource Centre board chair Natasha Doerksen, treasurer Brenda Klassen, Linda Menzies of Morden Massage Therapy and Menzies Pro Care, secretary Jaimee Loewen, programmer Janine Soltis. (GREG VANDERMEULEN/Morden Times)

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Many Hands Resource Centre took their first step to getting their own physical space, by accepting a donation for $1,000 from Morden Massage Therapy and BDO June 28.
The Resource Centre has existed since 2012, but has been without a physical space for more than three years after continuing to pay rent was just not feasible.
That’s about to change, as the Morden Alliance Church has offered them a space for their centre.
“We used to have one downtown,” Resource Centre Board Chair Natasha Doerksen said. “We would like to continue that again.”
The centre downtown offered a small food pantry, and was staffed to offer support, chats, coffee, milk coupons, groceries and connections to other services to help with emotional and financial wellbeing.
“We want to replace that, make it better, add more resources as we continue to grow, as the volunteer base grows,” Doerksen said.
The new location will be at the northwest corner of the Morden Alliance Church, but it’s not a church project.
“It’s not connected with Alliance Church except that they are providing us a space because they are totally on board with how Many Hands wants to continue to support the community,” she said. “We won’t have recurring costs like rent… it’s going to be donated to us.”
There is some work that needs to be done.
Many Hands Resource Centre is in charge of renovating the existing entrance to meet code, and create a storage room. That’s estimated to cost around $25,000.
They hope to offer laundry, a limited food pantry, and place where people can simply hang out.
“As our immigrant population grows, there’s always needs to connect,” Doerksen said.
She hopes this physical space will inspire growth.
“We do have the support of local churches,” she said. “With more connections comes more volunteers, and with more volunteers comes more ideas…”
Currently Many Hands Resource Centre hosts a community kitchen every Friday morning where people come together to cook and eat with one another.
Every third Tuesday of the month they host a free community dinner from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Linda Menzies, owner of Morden Massage Therapy and Menzies Pro Care, said the funds come from their 360 Program. The funds are raised after people get massages from the interns and donate the $29 to the fund.
In this case, funds were raised after BDO offered their employees massages to help cope with a busy accounting season. That fund is used for community projects and Menzies said this project is a great one to support.
“This is a great opportunity where they reach out, they come together and really build a mini-community within this building,” she said.
Menzies said everybody benefits from the 360 program. Students get real people to work on, people have the chance to get a $29 massage, and funds are raised for the community.
“We encourage people to come, allow the students to practice,” she said.
Many Hands Resource Centre hopes to be able to open their doors next winter.

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