A Historic Day for the Chilliwack YMCA Community

October 5th, 2017 will be remembered as a historic day celebration of what really matters in community. It was on that day a few short weeks ago that more than 200 Chilliwack YMCA members, volunteers, staff, donors and supporters attended the groundbreaking ceremony of the new Chilliwack YMCA.

The YMCA is proud to partner with the Chilliwack community to build a new centre of community for children, families, teens, adults and seniors to enjoy for many generations to come. 

The new $10 million centre is estimated to open late summer 2018. This project is made possible because of the donors and volunteers who see and believe in the role the YMCA plays in building a strong, healthy, inclusive and socially responsible society. Here are some photos of the historic event:

And while there is much to celebrate, this day also reminds us of the importantance of our fundraising work in Chilliwack. Children and families are counting on us to make the Y successful and the Chilliwack Capital Campaign Community Cabinet is meeting with people in the community each week to invite them to join our efforts.  This important work has only just begun, and we need your help to keep the momentum going. 

What Really Matters Campaign Donor Profile: Lukas Matheson 

We believe our donors are pioneers, founders and visionary leaders and it is their generosity that makes this vision possible—bringing urgently needed life-enhancing programs and services to underserved communities.

We are excited to introduce you to one of these visionary leaders who is strengthening the Chilliwack community through an investment in what really matters.

Lukas Matheson, President of Select Real Estate, moved to Chilliwack when he was eight years old. “We spent a good deal more time at the Y than at home,” says Lukas. Along with his brother Joe and sister Sarah, he made lifelong friends and learned important life skills at the YMCA. “Whether it’s indoor soccer, Thursday night basketball, Freakout Friday sessions, swim lessons or life guarding, the Y played an important role in my life.”

More recently, Lukas and his family helped a young refugee family start a new life in Canada. Through that experience they witnessed the impact YMCA programs continue to have on children and families. “With subsidies from the YMCA, mom could register her son in YMCA child care programs allowing her to leave him in capable hands while she attends classes and works full time. This not only helped the young boy integrate into the school system and learn English, but it gave mom the time during the day to adjust to their new life in Chilliwack,” says Lukas. “If you are new to the community, an introduction to the Y can help you and your family be part of something very quickly."  

It is because of Lukas' personal experiences with the Y and how he's seen it positively impact others, that he is investing in the What Really Matters Capital Campaign. “It’s very cool that me and my family can be part of the new Chilliwack YMCA project. It means so much to me now as my young family enjoys the same kind of programs I did as a child.”

Thank you to Lukas Matheson and Select Real Estate for joining us in ensuring a generation of children and families reach their potential.

Introducing the Chilliwack Capital Campaign Volunteer Cabinet 

Volunteers are the driving force behind the What Really Matters Capital Campaign in Chilliwack. With $713,500 already raised, the Chilliwack Capital Campaign Volunteer Cabinet is working hard so that all children and families can benefit from transformational YMCA programs. Led by cabinet Chair Wayne McAlpine and Vice Chair Jason Arnold, we are now pleased to introduce you to the rest of the team of inspiring leaders:

WAYNE MCALPINE, CHAIR CHILLIWACK CAMPAIGN CABINET

Wayne McAlpine has a long history with the Chilliwack community. A resident since 1985, Wayne has supported numerous community organizations as a volunteer, donor and member. Wayne has been a member of the Chilliwack Curling Club since 1985, a volunteer on the distribution committee for the Chilliwack Foundation, served as Past President of the Chilliwack Rotary Club and is a member, long term volunteer and donor at the Chilliwack YMCA. A retired banker, Wayne now enjoys travelling, golfing, curling, YMCA Aquafit classes and spending time with his wife Judy and two sons.

What Really Matters to Wayne? “There is a higher number of children in our area entering kindergarten who are developmentally vulnerable compared to the provincial average, and I think that is unacceptable. We need to do something about that––and a whole lot more.”

JASON ARNOLD, VICE-CHAIR CHILLIWACK CAMPAIGN CABINET

Jason Arnold is a Managing Partner of the Mertin Auto Group in Chilliwack, BC.  Born and raised in Oshawa, Ontario, Jason received his Bachelor of Commerce degree from McMaster University before beginning his career at General Motors. Over the next nine years he had several management positions that took him to Sudbury, Edmonton, Toronto, Moncton and Oshawa.  In 2007, Jason and his family moved to Chilliwack, BC, where he began working at Mertin Auto Group. In his spare time, Jason enjoys nothing more than spending time with his family, exercising and taking part in many outdoor activities.

What Really Matters to Jason?  “Family matters more than anything else. My wife and two sons will always be at the top of my list. My health and the health of others is very important to me which is one of the main reasons I am supporting the YMCA. Chilliwack has so many great outdoor activities available and all of them can be enjoyed longer, more fully and with fewer injuries by using YMCA facilities and programs as part of our daily routines.”

SCOTT BATE

Scott has been a member of the senior management team at the Mertin Auto Group since 1991. 

He and his family are proud supporters of many Chilliwack non-profits such as Chilliwack Community Services, Chilliwack School of Performing Arts, and of course the YMCA, where his father was a founding director.

Scott enjoys spending time with his wife Valerie and daughters, Jessica and Hailey. Other interests are Real Estate development, classic cars and boating. 

What Really Matters to Scott? "As a young person my parents instilled in me the importance of health, education, and social equality. I believe that it is important to give back if we are able, be it volunteering or financial support. It is important to me that the YMCA is able to continue to improve the lives of many, by developing confident and healthy children, youth, families, and seniors, regardless of means."

DR. KEN HARDER, MD, CCFP, FCFP

Ken has been a physician in Chilliwack since 1992 and the Site Director of the Chilliwack UBC Family Practice Residency program for the past 11 years. 

He is married to Kim and they have a son, Samuel, and daughter, Kathryn. “We are all Y "RATS" and proud of it!” says Ken.

What Really Matters to Ken? “The Y family. Our family have been members of the Chilliwack YMCA since our arrival in Chilliwack 25 years ago. When my children worked as lifeguards and camp counselors they met other young people who had been associated with the Y for many years and I was exposed to their Y stories and they were interested to hear our Y stories. I realized that being a Y member is like being a member of a very large family. I miss my Y family now that our Y is closed for construction. My days are made better when I reunite with one of my Y friends at the leisure center, on a local hiking trail, or at a grocery store, restaurant or pub. They are just as pleased to see me as I them and we commiserate on how much we miss the Y. This is why I agreed to be part of the Chilliwack Y cabinet. Our family needs a new home and I want to do my part to help this happen.”

ED KAYE

Ed is a lawyer and partner of Waterstone Law Group, practicing primarily in the area of Wills, Estates, Trusts and Estate Disputes.

He was born in Pennsylvania and moved with his family to British Columbia in 1974.  Ed received his BSc degree in Microbiology from UBC before moving east to obtain his law degree from Dalhousie University in Halifax. He returned to BC in 1989 and articled and practiced with a Chilliwack law firm before joining Waterstone in 1997.

He is a member of the Estate Planning Council of Abbotsford and a frequent lecturer on many topics related to Wills, Estates and Elder Law.

Outside of the office, Ed is very active in community affairs, having been Past- President of the Chilliwack-Fraser Rotary Club and Director of the Chilliwack Family YMCA, YMCA Endowment Foundation, Chilliwack Chamber of Commerce and Chilliwack Hospice Society respectively. Ed has a busy family life and fills any spare time participating in basketball, golf and traveling.

What Really Matters to Ed? “Family, health and community matter to me. Giving back to community is important for us all to feel connected.”

CASEY LANGBROEK, FCPA, FCGA

Casey Langbroek is privileged to have forty-seven years of experience in the accounting profession; building, growing and nurturing the accounting firm he is Senior Partner of LLT LLP.

Casey’s commitment to his profession, his community, to Canada and to International endeavors was recognized when he received the prestigious Fellowship designation from the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada.

Casey is a proven active leader within his community; he has served sixteen years on Chilliwack City Council and eighteen years in local and regional hospital governance, in addition to positions with numerous other community, municipal, provincial and federal boards and committees, including, most recently, the Chair of the BC Broiler Hatching Egg Commission.

He has been married to Jane for forty-three years. Together, they have three children and six grandchildren, yet Casey still claims he is too young to be a grandfather. Casey and Jane have encouraged their children and grandchildren to live a life filled with commitment, love for family, service to others and lots of fun! When not at the office, Casey enjoys spending time with family and friends, hiking, road-cycling, working out at the gym and actively travelling with 109 countries visited so far.

What Really Matters to Casey? "Health and wellness is very important to families, individuals and community. A vital ingredient to any community is the availability of recreation facilities and programs. The YMCA has provided recreational opportunities in Chilliwack for many years. To assist the YMCA as a member of the Chilliwack Campaign Cabinet was a natural match to one of my core values: 'Serve Community to Promote Health and Wellness'."

EDDY MEJLHOLM, CFP, CIM, FCSI

Eddy Mejlholm is a Wealth Advisor and Associate Portfolio Manager with RBC Dominion Securities in Chilliwack.  After several years working in the telecommunications industry, Eddy began working in the financial services industry in 2005 before obtaining his Certified Financial Planner designation in 2007. In addition to many financial industry qualifications and training, including the Chartered Investment Manager and Fellow of the Canadian Securities Institute designations, he holds a Bachelor of General Studies and an Advanced Certificate in Management Studies from Thompson Rivers University.

Eddy has made Chilliwack home since 2008 after growing up in nearby Surrey. He is married with three sons. They are very involved in their church, the local Chilliwack YMCA and other charities. The Mejlholms also love the outdoors so can often be found biking, hiking, running, canoeing and camping around BC.

What really matters to Eddy? “The YMCA is the ideal organization to help more families in Chilliwack reach their potential.  Whether it’s recovering from injury, illness or getting and staying healthy together as a family, the YMCA offers a variety of programs and a new facility that will serve our community for a long time to come. I’m excited about what the future has in store.”

MAUREEN MURPHY

Maureen moved to British Columbia in 2012 where she joined the University of the Fraser Valley as its Legal Counsel and subsequently became a member of the Law Society of British Columbia.  Prior to her move west, Maureen lived in Ontario where she practiced corporate commercial law from 2003 to 2005 and then joined Brock University in St. Catharines as its Legal Manager. 

Maureen studied Kinesiology (BHK 1997) and Law (LLB 2001) at the University of Windsor. She is passionate about the importance and role of physical activity for healthy citizens and a thriving society. We are therefore privileged to also have her serve as a member of the YMCA of Greater Vancouver Board of Directors. She lives in Chilliwack, BC with her long-time partner and two canines.

What Really Matters to Maureen? "What Really Matters to me is the health and well-being of our community members, in spirit, mind and body. It is also having a space where every community member feels that they can be their best self."

SCOTT SIMPSON

Scott was born in Chilliwack and has been a member of the Chilliwack Family YMCA for more than 35 years. Scott is a Notary Public and partner with Simpson Notaries, a family business that has served the Fraser Valley for close to 50 years.

Scott is active in supporting many community initiatives having been a past president of the Chilliwack Mt. Cheam Rotary Club, a Director of the Society of Notaries Public of British Columbia and currently sits on the board of the Chilliwack Crime Prevention Society.

When not working or volunteering, Scott enjoys spending time with his wife Jacqueline and two children, Lucas and Olivia. Scott is also an avid mountain biker and trail builder, spending as much time as possible in the local mountains.

What really matters to Scott? "My family instilled in me a duty to give back to the community whenever possible, whether that means volunteering my time or by supporting charities financially. Physical activity and sports have been a big part of my life. Having a strong and vibrant YMCA in my community is very important to me as it supports the recreational needs for all and provides a tremendous service to those in need from children to seniors."

The YMCA of Greater Vancouver Forms New Society

At the beginning of the year, we completed a review of our governance structure to better meet our regulatory, financial and risk management obligations and to adapt the format in keeping with the new BC Societies Act. One of the results of this review is the creation of a new society:  The YMCA of Greater Vancouver. 

Please ensure that all documentation pertaining to The YMCA of Greater Vancouver reflects the following changes: 

Legal Name:   The YMCA of Greater Vancouver    
Charity Number: 803 976 075 RR0001    
GST Number: 803 976 075 RT0001
Society Number:  S-0050350

If you need an updated gift of securities form or have any questions about this change, please email us at campaign@gv.ymca.ca.

What Really Matters Capital Campaign Volunteers

Thank you to the following leaders who are helping us reach our $140 million campaign goal. Special thanks goes to David Bassett of the Coquitlam Capital Campaign Community Cabinet for recently joining our efforts.

REGIONAL CABINET

Robert H. Lee (Honorary Chair)
Bob Chan Kent (Co-Chair)
Greg D'Avignon (Co-Chair)
Stephen Butz
Mary Anne Davidson
Gavin Hume, Q.C.
Russ Johnston
Dr. Graydon Meneilly
James N. Morton
Houtan Rafii
Catherine Van Alstine
Staff: Darlene Hepburn, George Rodger

INNER FAMILY

Mary Anne Davidson (Chair)
Shirley Broadfoot
Brian J. Hurl
David A. Woollven
Kevin Arbogast
Roberta Haas
Coral Henshaw
Darlene Hepburn
Kelly Janveaux
Marnie Jepsen
Sheri Josephson
Annie Markvoort
Grant Mosby
Karen Price
Stacey Stewart
Lisa Stiver
Staff: Baily Molotsky

CHILLIWACK CABINET

Wayne McAlpine (Chair)
Jason Arnold (Vice Chair)
Scott Bate
Ken Harder
Ed Kaye
Casey Langbroek
Eddy Mejlholm
Maureen Murphy
Scott Simpson
Staff: Karen Price

COQUITLAM CABINET

Janine Davies (Co-Chair)
Tracy Price (Co-Chair)
David Bassett
Marko Dekovic
Leah K. Iverson
Ted Lau
Staff: David A. Woollven

SURREY CABINET

Leslie Castellani
Bal Mann
Norman Stowe
Staff: Coral Henshaw

Inspirational Resource: "Strange Power of Weak Ties", by Eric Liu

In “the Strange Power of Weak Ties”, Eric Liu explains how 16 years of membership at the Seattle YMCA has shown him first hand the power of weak ties and their ability to connect people from differing backgrounds. This is due to the Y “being one of the few truly integrated institutions in the area.” He explains that because “the [YMCA] members [and staff] are poor and rich, from every generation, every racial category, every faith background, every gender and sexual identity, and the full spectrum of ability,” it has taught himself, his family and the other YMCA members “how to live in diversity.” Mr. Liu asserts that society is losing the ability to 'bridge social capital' which helps generate trust among unlike groups,” and that is “why the most important place in [his] local civic life is the Y”.

This article illustrates why we are building four new centres of community and how the YMCA can claim to build civil society and community. We really hope you will check out the link to this article below.