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Donation drive for new residents: A “big, warm New West hug”

Two New Westminster councillors are hosting a donation drive for residents who will soon move into a new affordable housing complex on Sixth Street.
Councillors Tasha Henderson, shown here, and Ruby Campbell have organized a donation drive for folks who will soon move into a new affordable housing building.

Two city councillors are teaming up to put out the welcome mat to make residents of the city’s new affordable housing development feel welcome.

Operated by Lu’ma Native Housing Society and Swahili Vision International Association, the newly constructed building at 831 Sixth St. aims to provide affordable housing to Black and Indigenous families, Elders, and individuals.

Councillors Ruby Campbell and Tasha Henderson have organized a donation drive for the residents who are moving into the building that’s located across the street from New Westminster Secondary School.

 “Those residents are going to be moving in soon. Actually, they probably have started, and they will be moving in throughout the summer, with full capacity by September,” Hendeson said at the June 24 council meeting. “We really want to make sure that those residents feel welcome and celebrated as they come in – a big, warm New West hug.”

In June and July, community members can drop off donations of new household items and gift cards, which will be used to create 96 welcome baskets for the individuals and families moving into the building. Donations can be dropped off at five local businesses: Good Omen (34 Sixth St.); Wildfires Bookshop (712B 12th St.); Groove Cat Books and Records (775 Sixth St.); Zesty Lemon Clothing Co. (430 East Columbia St.); and Take the Cake (150-1110 Ewen Ave.)

Henderson said new household items, cleaning supplies and gift cards can be dropped off at those locations during their business hours.

“Little things,” she said. “We're putting together 96 welcome baskets.”

Henderson said the Massey Theatre Society has generously donated 96 pairs of tickets to a future show to its new neighbours.

“Residents will be able to choose a show of their liking, to their taste, at the Massey Theatre,” she said. “So, one set of tickets per household in that new building, which is just like so generous.”

Aboriginal Land Trust, Swahili Vision International Association is embarking on an exciting housing development initiative in New Westminster.

This housing project is a testament to collaboration and community impact. By recognizing the underserved Black and urban Indigenous communities’ need for affordable housing, we are laying the foundation for a unique living space that promotes the exchange of knowledge, cultures, and traditions across generations.

Operated by Lu’ma Native Housing Society and Swahili Vision International Association, and with operational oversight provided by the Aboriginal Housing Management Association, this project will redefine community living. The housing complex will offer a range of one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments, along with ground-floor amenities like a full kitchen, washroom, and storage room.