Excerpt from the Official Report of
DEBATES OF THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY

(Hansard)


November 16, 2015

Congratulations to the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau on 85 Years of Giving

S. Simpson: As we start to think about the Christmas season and gifts for family and friends, let us think about an organization that has had similar things on their mind for the last 85 years. The Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau is celebrating 85 years of working to ensure that Christmas is a little better for thousands around the Lower Mainland.

This year the bureau will deliver over 100,000 toys and items to local bureaus and community groups and will help over 1,000 Vancouver families directly with food vouchers, clothes and toys to ensure they have a merry Christmas. And every summer since 1947 they have sent kids to camp who otherwise would not be able to afford to go. Established in 1930, this organization has only two full-time staff and gets the rest done with volunteers — a remarkable accomplishment. It is an organization with an impressive group of sponsors from the corporate and labour community.

A great example of community support is the motorcycle toy run that this year added $20,000 and 2,100 new toys to the bureau’s coffers. While many deserve credit for these accomplishments, I want to note one person in particular — Chris Bayliss, the executive director of the organization. He truly does it all. He raises money, manages volunteers, drives the truck, sorts the toys and sweeps the floor. Chris demonstrates every day a commitment to making people’s lives better, and we can all learn from that. Thank you, Chris.

We often speak in this place of reducing poverty. While the Christmas bureau may not do that, they do reduce the stigma of poverty. When kids return to school after Christmas and talk about their new toys, the students helped by the bureau will be part of that conversation too. When kids come back after summer and talk about their camp experience, poor kids helped by the bureau to go to camp can talk about their experience too.

We all wish the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau was unnecessary, but we know that will not be the case anytime soon. Until we beat poverty and inequality, let’s thank and support the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau on 85 years of making the season a happier one for many and wish them much support and success in their future.

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Saturday, November 16, 2019 - 12:00pm - 4:30pm