Whispers of Hope is a non-profit charitable organization motivated to empower individuals by providing community support, nourishment, and essentials in a safe and welcoming environment
Inspiring community connects one person at a time
Loving – Compassionate – Respectful – Dependable – Resourceful
Whispers of Hope is a registered non-profit charitable organization established in 1996 and was originally named the “Hands of Mercy”. It was formed by members of local faith groups who realized the need, not just for a cup of coffee, but for fellowship, bible studies and a warm place to gather. Over the years, a full community (soup) kitchen evolved and a thrift store was opened to help offset the cost of running the kitchen which fed 50-60 guests daily in 2017. Whispers’ mission began to offset some of the impacts of poverty by assisting the needy with food, fellowship, and a space where all belong in the community.
Major Accomplishments & Highlights:
- Established Hands of Mercy in 1996
- Feb 2005 – Changed from Hands of Mercy to Whispers of Hope Benevolence Association
- Feb 2005 – 2012 Unknown other than the organization was almost ready to close its doors due to the inability to pay its bills, and therefore, resorting to holding garage sales in order to keep its doors open. This occurred just prior to relocating to its site on Riverside Dr.
- Dec 2012 – MAAP Project (Multi-Agency Accommodation Project) – A collaborative partnership developed between two other not-for profit organizations (Habitat for Humanity Boundary, later formed as Habitat for Humanity Southeast BC; and, BETHS – Boundary Emergency Transition & Housing Society) to create a permanent facility intended to meet the needs of individuals and families in the Boundary region who are homeless, hungry and/or unable to obtain decent, safe and affordable housing.
- Nov 2013 – Whispers of Hope Thrift Store and Community Kitchen opened to the public at new site – 7212 Riverside Drive, Grand Forks, BC.
- October 2014 – received Boundary Chamber of Commerce Community Impact award, sponsored by Grand Forks Credit Union
- March 2015 – MAAP Project – Collapse of the MAAP due to inability to obtain an extension on our lease, resulting in Habitat withdrawing from the project.
- June 2015 – Redevelopment of organizational needs; policy development, strategic plan.
- October 2016 – received Boundary Chamber of Commerce Community Impact award, sponsored by Grand Forks Credit Union
- August 2017 – Whispers receives 6 month’s notice from City to relocate
- January 2018 – Whispers receives 49 day extension from City
- March 2018 – Community Kitchen and Thrift Store closed and moved from Riverside
- April 2018 – Thrift Store opened in 3rd Street Plaza location
- May 2018 – Historic Flood – (storage contents destroyed)
- November 2018 – Community engagement dinners & Strategic Planning Revisited
- December 2018 – Administrative oversight of new BC Housing Warming Centre
- March 2019 – Lease signed for new Community Kitchen location on 5th St.
- June 2019 – Extension of oversight for BC Housing Warming Centre
- August 2019 – Warming Shelter Closed due to City Zoning Infractions
- December 2019 – Hot Lunch program offered at Holy Trinity Anglican Church
- February 2020 – 5th St. renovations completed, rename project: Courtesy Kitchen
- March 2020 – Thrift Store temporarily closed due to COVID-19 restrictions
- April 2020 – Courtesy Kitchen Open – take out only under COVID restrictions
- June 2020 – Thrift Store reopens with new COVID measures (masks mandatory)