The gift of music
“Music has been something to bring a lot of different cultures together in our centre,” says Bethany Tremblay, a program coordinator at the Open Arms Youth Centre located in Uniacke Square. Despite the disparate backgrounds and nationalities of the youth aged 5-17 she works with, “I think the most relatable thing we found is that we all have this love of music—and how making music brings people together,” she says. These youth love music with such a fiery insatiability that, during a discussion in late November about the holiday season, they were wishing for instruments this Christmas.
But these kids aren’t waiting on Santa’s supply chain for instruments to appear: They’re launching their own music program, which has already gained enough traction that Dalhousie’s music department has offered support. If you have an instrument in good condition, gathering dust, or funds that could be used to purchase woodwinds, brass or other additions to the program’s growing chorus—get in touch by contacting Wayne Thompson, the Centre’s major gifts and planned giving representative at email@example.com.
Clean out the junk drawer, the back of the closet and the cabinet full of old electronics—a group of local businesses is collecting phones for M.O.S.H. Halifax—AKA the Mobile Outreach Street Health team for the third year in a row. The outreach workers and nurses employed by M.O.S.H. help unhoused, street-involved and marginalized folks navigate the health care system. Donated phones, new or used, will be given to community members in need.
Phones are crucial for making appointments with health, addictions and employment services, getting in touch with shelters or food providers, and of course important social connection with friends and family. Once you’ve dug up your old phone, ensure it’s been reset and includes a charging cable. Then just drop it off at one of three community locations: Dilly Dally Cafe, 6100 Quinpool Road, Seven Bays Bouldering, 2019 Gottingen Street or Boom12 Communications, 6218 Quinpool Road. Visit phonesfortheholidays.ca for more info.