Every 35 minutes, there’s a Habitat home dedication for a new partner family somewhere in the world. Since 1985, Habitat for Humanity has made affordable homeownership possible for over 2,866 families in need of affordable housing in Canada, including 228 in 2015. “Primary funding comes from our 95 Canadian ReStores that sell new or gently used home décor and building supplies,” says Ken Miller, Manager, Western Canada Operations. According to Katie Franzios, Senior Communications Manager, Habitat for Humanity Canada also benefits from the support of approximately 70,000 volunteers each year.
I recently had the opportunity to meet with Ken and also Dennis Coutts, CEO, Habitat for Humanity
Greater Vancouver – at their new Distribution Centre in Burnaby. This inventory hub ships product to 35 Western ReStores – from Campbell River to Winnipeg. It was inspiring to hear Dennis talk so passionately about how Habitat Greater Vancouver is helping to “break the cycle of poverty”. With a 27-unit townhouse village on Government Street in Burnaby complete, their next build project is set to begin in June – at 8180 Ash Street – in Richmond. Six single family homes, each with a secondary suite, will serve 12 families. The secondary suites will be affordable housing for seniors at risk, with proceeds benefiting the Habitat families. I was also very interested to learn about Habitat Greater Vancouver’s deconstruction services.
We’re often reminded about the growing importance of corporate social responsibility, social impact, corporate citizenship, and sustainability in business today. If your company is interested in donating excess lumber or other building materials to Habitat’s build programs, contact Ken Miller to learn more. Any yard clean-ups can go straight to one of two Distribution Centres supporting 97 ReStores across Canada. “These donations will help us serve more families,” says Ken, who confirms it’s easy, green, and good for the bottom line.
with Ken Miller and Dennis Coutts – April 16th
Record numbers jammed the elegant Vancouver Club’s Grand Ballroom yesterday afternoon, for the annual North American Wholesale Lumber Association (NAWLA) Regional Meeting. Billed as The Lumber Marketing Event of the Year, NAWLA’s Executive Director Marc Saracco opened the meeting at 3:50pm. Presentations by three featured speakers were all very well-received:
- Cees de Jager, Chief Marketing Officer, Softwood Lumber Board
- Daryl Swetlishoff, Senior Managing Director, Raymond James Ltd.
- Susan Yurkovich, President and CEO, COFI
Before giving way to the ever-popular networking session, the meeting concluded with a presentation from Presenting Sponsor HSBC Bank Canada’s Ananth Krishnan, Head of Business Development, Global Trade & Receivables Finance. The Planning Committee also wishes to thank CP Rail, Euler Hermes, Norman G Jensen, and Blue Book Services for their generous support. Thanks also to Tree Frog News, for the following images posted with permission. See their full report here. More event images at Building-Products.com here.
There’s always a chance that brilliance of cherry trees in blossom could upstage a Council of Forest Industries Convention scheduled for mid April in the Okanagan. However, the program itinerary ensures there’s plenty to capture our attention at the Kelowna meetings this weekend. COFI’s Convention website boasts that the largest gathering of the forest sector in Western Canada will attract 400-500 delegates “including industry CEOs, vice presidents and senior managers from continental North America and offshore, senior representatives from customers, suppliers, financial institutions, law firms, local government and chambers of commerce, Federal and Provincial Ministers, MPs, MLAs and senior civil servants, along with Premier Christy Clark… and me.
The Convention though, will see and hear the Premier, featured as closing keynote speaker. The annual gathering brings attention and awareness to the significance of forestry to the economic well-being of the province. My 25 takeaways from last year’s convention are available here.
COFI points out that “with 140 B.C. communities dependent on forestry, the 300 wood products manufacturing facilities in B.C. provide one out of every four manufacturing jobs in the province and account for 35 per cent of all commodity exports from B.C. COFI CEO and President, Susan Yurkovich, featured speaker at the upcoming NAWLA Regional Meeting in Vancouver April 21st, reminded us that “the industry directly and indirectly employs about 145,000 across the province, from Fort St. John to Vancouver, with one in 16 jobs in B.C. associated with forestry.” All of this surely representative of an industry in full bloom.
Lake Okanagan, Kelowna (April 9, 2016)