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Unity Project unveils heritage gem to celebrate 10 years in permanent home

In celebration of the milestone of Unity Project’s 10th anniversary, Unity Project is proud to unveil the newly restored façade at our Dundas St. property. The $100,000 heritage restoration was made possible by the Save UP Front initiative, which drew support from many generous community partners including London Dental Community Cares, The Home Depot Canada Foundation, the London Advisory Committee on Heritage, and the City of London.

After mounting a heritage plaque on the building, we celebrated the updates to our facility and Unity’s continued success with over 100 community members and held a ribbon cutting ceremony to mark the occasion.

The outpouring of support for Unity Project’s restoration reflects our organization’s dedication to building relationships within our community. “The restoration of this heritage gem has demonstrated Unity Project’s commitment to their clients and the neighbourhood, and has left a legacy for our community,” says Sarah Merritt, executive director of the Old East Village Business Improvement Area.

Unity project extends our utmost gratitude to all of the individuals, businesses, and community partners who contributed to UP’s heritage restoration.

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London’s littlest shelter marks big milestone in community contribution

August 11 marked the 10th anniversary of Unity Project opening its doors in the Old East Village.

Though once wrought with controversy, Unity Project has established itself as a respected model for emergency shelter and transitional housing services. “In the eyes of many we were just a bunch of unruly, idealistic kids. Lucky for London, they were half right!” says Chuck Lazenby, Unity Project’s executive director. “Being young helped us to take risks, but we were also smart, hard working and committed to our values.”

Over the past decade, Unity Project has sheltered approximately 5,000 men and women, has provided drop-in services over 180,000 times, and has assisted more than 1,750 individuals obtain housing. Frontline staff have made a minimum 100,000 referrals and volunteers have contributed 125,000 hours. Unity’s shelter environment operates with the values of respect, cooperation, interdependence, and compassion while focusing on the development of participants’ life skills.

“We hope that Unity Project has helped London to see homelessness as a crisis that people experience, caused by poverty and that it does not define a person,” says Lazenby. “We have helped thousands to approach stability and achieve independence, and I am confident that everyone achieves some success during their experience with us.”

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Music Is What Feelings Sound Like

We are excited to introduce music to our Life Skills Program! Help us launch this important programming component by donating new/used instruments… in particular we need ukuleles and acoustic guitars.

To donate, or for more information, contact Jenny Butchart, Life Skills Coordinator at 519.433.8809 or jbutchart@unityproject.ca

Thank you for your support!

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Renovations Update

Save UP Front aims to provide for resident safety and security and to contribute to the revitalization of the Old East Village Community. Heritage Designation has been awarded acknowledging the cultural and architectural significance of the 1886 Queen Anne style façade. $100,000 has been invested to the restoration. The campaign to restore the deteriorating façade was championed by London Dental Community Cares, a group of dentists and dental industry suppliers fundraising within their own professional community and joined by the Agape Foundation of London, REALTORS Care Foundation, Duo Building, Blueline Design Services, SJMA Architecture, London Endowment for Heritage, the Architectural Conservancy Society-London Region Branch, The Home Depot Canada Foundation and the City of London – Planning and Heritage. The restoration is almost complete, with our goal of mounting the Heritage Designation plaque this Fall.