one by one® story: The McCreary Centre Society
From less phone time to foster care improvements, young people at The McCreary Centre Society are improving youth health across British Columbia. Led by young staff and volunteers, The McCreary Centre Society develops ideas based on community research, provides funds and engages British Columbian youth in improving their fellow young people’s health. And with tote bag gifts, The McCreary Centre Society has helped many virtual volunteers feel connected.
Improving all aspects of youth health
The core of the McCreary Centre Society is the Youth Advisory Council (YAC), a volunteer group that guides the programs. The YAC provides Youth Action grants that help local young people carry out youth community health projects—from improving mental health to decreasing substance abuse to increasing community connections.
For example, one ninth grader wanted students at his school to have more real conversations and less phone time. So, he hosted a “Digital Detox” day. Using prizes he purchased with the Youth Action grant, he encouraged 40 students to leave their phones in the school’s office all day long.
A similar but separate YAC, the Provincial Youth Advisory Council, found itself with a particular challenge as it carried out its work. This virtual team of youths in cities and small towns across British Columbia started to feel alone in their efforts.
The McCreary Centre Society wanted to help them feel connected. Enter 4imprint’s one by one® grant. With the grant, The McCreary Centre Society purchased canvas tote bags. They filled them with water bottles, pens and lip balm—also from 4imprint—and mailed the tote bag gifts to each young person in the virtual YAC.
“Never meeting in-person can make you feel a bit disconnected. But when they all saw something physical show up at their house, it helped the virtual YAC connect and bond to each other, because they all got the same thing,” Director of Community Engagement Stephanie Martin said.
A note from Cheryl
It’s amazing how a simple tote bag gift helps virtual volunteer youths feel connected. We’re honored to have helped The McCreary Centre Society volunteers bond. If you’re a nonprofit interested in applying for a one by one grant, visit onebyone.4imprint.ca.