It is a case of stretching for dollars.
When yogis gather in Saanich’s Horner Park this Thursday from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., they will go beyond mere exercise and mediation. They will also be raising funds for the Shelbourne Community Kitchen through Mount Tolmie Community Association’s Yoga in Horner Park program, which asks participants to donate $5.
Samantha Lawrence, a spokesperson for the initiative, said the program started in the summer of 2018, with five sessions in July and August. “The suggested donation amount was $2 per participant and as a result $240 was raised for the Shelbourne Community Kitchen,” she said. “This year we are offering the program every Thursday evening, with nine sessions in total, and are suggesting a donation amount of $5.”
The first session was on July 4, with remaining sessions scheduled for Aug. 8, 15, 22 and 29.
“It was an easy decision to donate all proceeds to the Shelbourne Community Kitchen,” said Lawrence. “It is a local organization that does such great work in our community, and the Mount Tolmie Community Association is one of its partners and founding members. It was a chance for us to offer a program in the community, by the community, for the community.”
The Shelbourne Community Kitchen opened in March 2015. Located in a modest house in the 3500 block of Shelbourne Street, the facility offers programs that teach participants how to source, choose and prepare healthy food more affordably through its communal kitchen, where participants receive cooking lessons from trained volunteers, almost half of which are also program participants.
The kitchen also runs a garden and serves as a resource centre, building relations and resilience along the way. It also runs an emergency pantry program.