Community Care Programs

Year Round Downtown Eastside Community Programming

Powell Street Festival Society’s Advocacy and Outreach Committee hosts a series of year round events at Oppenheimer Park which incorporate capacity building opportunities for peers, distribution of meals, and cultural activities which share Japanese Canadian history and culture.

Since our pandemic pivot and the success of our Telethon last year, we have been supporting Downtown Eastside grassroots efforts to build capacity and sustain people’s well-being during the health crises of Covid19 and fentanyl overdoses. Our support continues to fund the weekday preparation and delivery of 200 daily meals through the WePress Community Kitchen and a weekly grocery delivery program to 190 Chinese seniors thanks to the generosity of Bing Ho’s family and friends and the SRO Collaborative’s distribution network. 

We are presently exploring micro-programs to empower tenants in historic Japanese Canadian SROs (single room occupancy housing) with resources and projects from communal cooking to building repairs to improve living conditions, impart new skills and build community. 

Our community engagement programs provide meaningful and sustainable connections to the historic location of the early Japanese settlers prior to their forced removal during the Second World War. Through our practice of social justice, we honour this heritage while seeking to be accountable as settler-colonizers and acknowledging the larger narrative of displacement and injustices on these unceded territories of the Tsleil- Waututh, Squamish, and Musqueam peoples. 

昨年のパンデミック対策とテレソンの成功以来、私たちは、Covid19とフェンタニルの過剰摂取という健康上の危機に面している人々のため、収容可能人数を確保し、彼らの健康を維持し、イーストサイドのダウンタウンの草の根活動を支援してきました。また、ビン・ホさんのご家族やご友人、そしてSRO Collaborativeの流通ネットワークのご好意により、平日にWePress Community Kitchenで毎日200食の食事を作り、配達するプログラムや、中国の高齢者100人に毎週食料品を配達するプログラムにも継続して支援を行っています。 



PowellStFest Community Kitchen

PowellStFest Community Kitchen program is our meal program servicing the DTES neighbourhood. The meals help fill the gap of insufficient food for low-income community and the cooking program provides an opportunity for people to cook together, learn new skills, and build community. This not only provides a positive mental health experience but gives people the sense of gratification and steady income.  

As of mid-October 2020, PSFS contributes to the WePress Community Kitchen based in the Vancouver Japanese Language School & Japanese Hall’s (VJLS-JH) facility to cook and distribute 200 meals per day, Mondays through Fridays. We are also supporting a pilot project with Health through Spirit, who are integrating their peers into this network with enhanced mental health and trauma support.

Powell Street Festival Society is now part of the Downtown Eastside Community Kitchens (DECK), where a network of grassroots groups have gathered to enhance food security, work towards a long-term vision of food sovereignty, and nurture community resilience in our beloved Downtown Eastside (DTES) neighbourhood. 

The Giving Ceremony

During the 2020 festival weekend, PSF volunteers and DTES community ambassadors will distribute 250 care packages to unhoused and precariously housed people living in the historic Paueru Gai/Powell Street neighborhood. The need for housing for all is at the core of basic needs for those we support through our Community Care programs. Much more/thousands of units of decent housing at the social assistance rental rate are required so that people can have the stability they need to address the many challenges they are facing. We thank the City of Vancouver for its financial support through a Homelessness Action Week grant. 


We thank our DTES Community Partners including: Aboriginal Front Door, Carnegie Community Centre, Carnegie Community Action Project, DTES  Neighbourhood  House, Health Through Spirit, Muslim Care Centre, Overdose Prevention Sites, Pace, Wish, Right to Remain, SRO Collaborative, VANDU,  Watari, WePress Community Art Space, Western Aboriginal Harm Reduction Society, Vancouver Buddhist Temple, Vancouver Japanese Language School and Japanese Hall, Vancouver Womens Health Centre.