Oaklands neighbourhbood campaign to save St. Albans nears deadline

Victoria residents rallying to raise $1.1 million to buy church

The task at hand seems daunting, but an innovative model of community investment is proving it can raise funds in a hurry for the right cause.

The Oaklands Community Centre and Association is raising money in a hurry to purchase St. Albans church and hall, home to Lansdowne Co-operative preschool.

“We respect that (the preschool has) been here for 48 years and that they do a great community service,” said Kristi Rivait, executive director of the centre. “It’s a beautiful space for a community hub.”

Oaklands hopes to raise $1.1 million by May 18. It’s a 11th-hour rush the community tried to avoid.

Two years ago it approached the Anglican Diocese with an interest in purchasing the property. At that time, the Diocese wasn’t ready to sell and Oaklands bought the former Discovery School instead, where it operates a child care centre.

Shortly afterwards, the diocese put St. Albans on the market and a private developer purchased it. The sale was finalized April 16.

The developer has a plan to build private homes on the lot, but is willing to sell it to the community instead, at a small profit.

“The developer has been terrific in giving us extra time,” Rivait said.

Oaklands’ main fundraising strategy revolves around a type of investment to own St. Albans through a self-directed RRSP.

“This is a bit of an innovative approach,” said Rivait.

The details of the investment and its returns are still being worked out, but it has so far generated $100,000 in pledges, mainly from parents belonging to the Lansdowne Co-operative preschool.

Lansdowne operates with low fees and in return, parents help run the school. It’s recognized as the last fully co-operative model of preschool on the island.

To learn more about the campaign, visit savestalbans.com.

rholmen@vicnews.com

Just Posted

420 celebrations turn over new leaf at B.C. legislature

Cannabis is legal for the first time in the 21-year existence of the 420 event in Victoria

VIDEO: ‘Stewie the Starfish’ mascot revealed at Premier League kickoff party

Pacific FC kickoff party scores in Victoria Inner Harbour

Big Brothers Big Sisters’ Bowl for Kids’ Sake returns to Langford

Annual fundraising event held from April 26 to 28

Report calls on Saanich to expand multicultural programming at recreation facilities

Report also notes that Saanich could do more for sexual minorities.

WATCH: Movie star and PACE alum Calum Worthy talks musical theatre and his career

“American Vandal” and “Austin and Ally” actor has been returning to the program for over 20 years

POLL: How often does your family use BC Ferries?

Navigating the lineups for BC Ferries is a way of life for… Continue reading

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of April 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, 35 people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

B.C. mom wages battle to get back four kids taken from her in Egypt

Sara Lessing of Mission has help from Abbotsford law firm

VIDEO: Fire guts Peachland home

Crews are still on scene pumping water onto the blaze in the Okanagan neighbourhood

$6K raised in one day’s time for family of woman gunned down in Penticton

GoFundMe launched for family of Darlene Knippelberg, to pay for funeral costs and other expenses

B.C. mountain biker sent home from hospital twice, despite broken vertebrae

Released in Maple Ridge to go home with three fractured vertebrae

Seven tips to travel safely this Easter long weekend

An average of three people are killed, and hundreds more injured, each Easter long weekend in B.C.

Most Read