While the kids were away, Enbridge Pipelines employees came over to play.
More accurately, about 30 Enbridge volunteers came out to the Youth Emergency Shelter Society’s (YESS) START House yesterday to perform an extreme makeover on the home’s 10 bedrooms while the kids were at school.
“By the time they (volunteers) leave today, every bedroom is going to be different and they’re going to be absolutely amazing,” said YESS executive director Deb Cautley. “It’s not about Enbridge. For Enbridge it’s about the kids. It’s about what they can do to make the kids’ lives better.”
The START House facility is used for homeless and at-risk kids who are dealing with some of their issues and barriers.
“START House is pretty much a well-kept secret, a lot of people don’t know it’s here,” Cautley said. “Really, it’s a client-directed program where the kids steer their own course. But we’re there to help them and to give them some of the tools they need and the resources that exist in the community so they’re not always coming back to us for help.”
The makeover was funded through Enbridge’s $50,000 contribution raised through its United Way campaign.
“Giving back to the community is something we do on a regular basis,” said Lorna St. Thomas, senior adviser of community partnerships and investment for Enbridge Pipelines. “We had a huge waiting list for employees wanting to come but we had to limit it because the house is only so big.”
Enbridge has been a longtime supporter of YESS and sponsors programming under the Safety pillar at the new Armoury Youth Centre.