Over $50,000 granted to repair Willow Creek House for those living with mental health challenges

Over $50,000 granted to repair Willow Creek House for those living with mental health challenges

jan 18 2019


Mental health is at the root of many of our community’s most pressing challenges. Even when individuals are on the road to recovery, transitioning and integrating back into the community may be a long and arduous process, a process through which many people are forced to suffer alone.

Can-Voice Consumer/Survivor Community Support Services is a local, member-run organization that empowers and educates people living with mental health challenges. Located at 450 Spruce Street, the Willow Creek House currently houses seven residents and the activity centre supports over 50 individuals. The tight-knit community environment allows members to recover and grow at their own pace with support from individuals with lived experience.

“Our activity centre is a place to gather on a daily basis to learn new skills and share stories,” says Betty Edwards, Can-Voice’s Executive Director. “Residents and members are empowered to develop self-confidence, form friendships and build community through social outings and activities.”

A funding cut in October 2017 created operational challenges for Can-Voice. Paid staff became volunteers and it was only through their sacrifice that Can-Voice could continue supporting its residents. While working to address this funding gap, Can-Voice also faced urgent and significant repairs needed to Willow Creek House. It was under these difficult circumstances that Can-Voice reached out to London Community Foundation.

LCF has a deep understanding of community needs and the flexibility to address them, which placed the Foundation in a unique position to help by granting $12,499 in seed money towards a Willow Creek House Repair Fund. With the help of seven LCF fundholders, over $50,000 was raised.

“This has been amazing,” said Betty Edwards. “The generosity and support of LCF and its fundholders has been life-renewing.”

The support of the Willow Creek House Repair Fund is an excellent example of the collective power of giving. LCF is humbled by the dedication of the outstanding members of Can-Voice and grateful to support their work towards a sustainable future. Expanding their housing capacity is integral to reaching sustainability. Can-Voice plans to renovate the house’s basement creating space for two more residents. They will also pursue the possibility of adding another residence on their property.

The Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph in Canada, long-time funders of Can-Voice’s healthy living/gardening group, agreed to generously donate after finding out about LCF’s efforts.

Thank you to these funds who contributed to the Willow Creek House Repair Fund:

Bourne Family Fund
Marjorie and Brayl Copp Family Fund
Allan and Susan Edwards Family Fund
Joseph Rea Environmental Fund
Rick and Carol Richardson Family Fund
Wilson and Judith Rodger Fund
Serendipity Fund