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MEAL TAKE-OUT

Food security and social isolation are two of the most pressing issues for many of Quebec’s seniors and anyone else with mobility challenges. Our meals delivery program presents a holistic solution to this. Every week day, our staff and volunteers walk through the Point with two objects: deliver a meal (the same one we make for our community lunch) and engage the participants in a little chat.

Over the years, we have been successful in creating relationships of trust with our participants and integrating them into the larger community. Together with the Pointe-Saint-Charles Community Clinic, our partner in this program, we have become part of the participants’ support network.

For more information contact Patrick de Gruyter our Projects Coordinator

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AFTER-SCHOOL

Saint Columba House provides a high-quality bilingual After School program that focuses on wellness and mental health programming for children in the community of Point Saint Charles. The goals of this program are to provide art, music, drama and yoga classes on a weekly basis, enhancing self-expression techniques and reducing anxiety in youth participants. In addition, we offer tutoring to help with literacy and numeracy skills, and the children receive milk and a nutritious snack every day. Parents are involved through family night activities, have regular contact with staff, and are welcome to volunteer in the program! Ultimately, our goals in the After School Program are to support children in the Pointe by developing the academic, social, emotional and life skills needed to succeed.

Transition Program

The Grades 5 and 6’s in our After School Program will be part of the Transition Group. This particular group’s activities will focus on skills and lessons important to transitioning into high school. Resiliency, time management, conflict resolution and independence are encouraged and promoted in close communication with parents, guardians, community resources and schools. Special workshops and outings for youth entering high school are frequent.

Volunteers

Central to the After School Program is our team of dedicated volunteers. On a daily basis we have 5-6 volunteers helping children with their homework and working individually with students who need extra help. We also have many University students who participate by leading art and theatre workshops, by working individually with students and by supporting the After-School program staff. It is thanks to the dedication of our staff and volunteers that we are able to ensure that this program continues to be a success.

For more information, contact Emilie Jacques our Family Programs Coordinator or Mea Bissett our Transition Program Coordinator

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For more information, contact Émilie Jaques our Families Coordinator or Mea Bissett our Transition Program Coordinator

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COMMUNITY LUNCH

The Community Lunch Program offers Point St. Charles residents and guests hot, nutritious and balanced lunches prepared fresh daily by the Lunch Program staff and volunteers. The cost of the meal is a symbolic $2.00 (or a $30 meal card for 20 lunches). Up to 125 lunches are served each day to community residents and program participants. For many low-income people, this is often the only nutritious meal they will eat for the entire day. The program also delivers take-away meals to elderly shut-ins, to a refugee living in sanctuary in a nearby church or to people too ill to come to us.

The Community Lunch Program also serves as an important meeting place where people can socialize, organize, mobilize, publicize and interact with other people to counter isolation. It is a community space offering support and opportunities to nurture social networks. Special celebratory events are also organized by the lunch room staff on occasions such as Christmas, volunteer day or International Women’s Day for the benefit of the community, as well as occasional fundraisers and open house celebrations.

The Community Lunch Coordinator provides training and mentorship to many volunteers and trainees seeking to expand their skills and eventually reintegrate the workforce. Learning about cooking and organization as well as contributing to their community builds up self-esteem and increases employment skills.

In addition to providing a healthy lunch to meet the very basic needs of the community, the program is also providing a leadership role in teaching the public about nutrition. The environmental recycling and composting program established in the Saint Columba House Lunch Program has now become a model of excellence for other Church and Community groups interested in improving environmental practices and reducing their ecological footprint.

For more information, contact Aché Alhadji our Kitchen Coordinator

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HAND-IN-HAND

Hand-in-Hand provides programs for a group of 16 intellectually challenged adults, some who also have physical disabilities. A weekly art class, physical fitness, literacy, projects, games and other activities help participants develop or maintain skills that enable them to live as autonomously as possible. Hand-in-Hand offers an environment in which each participant is cared for, celebrated and weclomed.

The Hand-in-Hand program began in 1982 when parents of young adults living with intellectual dissabilities came together to create services and resources. Hand-in-Hand now reaches out to the aging population of the intellectually challenged, many of whom are undergoing life transitions such as loss of parents, moves to foster care, or declining physical abilities. 

For more information, contact Melissa Chamberlain, our Hand-in-Hand coordinator

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ALTERNATE SCHOOL

Part of the Community Action Program for Children, the alternate school program is or anglophone or allophone families with children 3-4 years old, and allows parents to support and learn from each other by building curriculum for children, sharing their experiences through discussions on fears, sharing, potty training, nutrition, safety, etc.


Children learn to follow a routine in a class setting with a teacher. Social skills development is done through free play and organized activities, as well as fine motor skills development through arts and crafts (coloring, scrunching, tearing, painting, etc.) and gross motor skills through games (running, jumping, stretching, etc.).

An emphasis is placed on language development by engaging the children in our word games (vocabulary cards), story time, songs and poems.

For more information, contact Karlene Keith our Alternate School Teacher

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PRESS START YOUTH COOP

The Press Start Youth Co-op is a by youth, for youth project, created in response to the lack of meaningful employment opportunities for teeangers in Pointe-Saint-Charles, while also providing young people a space to develop leadership skills, learn about social justice, and fight for change in their communities and in broader society.

The co-op’s main service is an arcade space, located in Batiment 7, which is collectively run and staffed by a group of 5 youth aged 14-19. At the arcade, kids and teenagers can come hang out and play video games for a small fee, and families can book birthday parties animated by our youth staff!

Beyond the arcade, Press Start also organizes events and actions focused on fighting racism and xenophobia, as well as artistic activities that explore the re-use of discarded materials as a means to discuss environmental sustainability.

For more information, including the arcade’s opening hours, visit Press Start’s website at https://arcadepressstartpsc.wordpress.com/

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Beehives

Saint Columba House installed two beehives in its rooftop garden. Children in the Pointe-Saint-Charles neighbourhood are now learning about pollination in urban agriculture. They also see the fruits of garden produce in a meal program serving low-income residents, and taste delicious honey. 

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Counselor-In-Training (CIT) Program

In the CIT program, youth aged 14-16 are empowered as community leaders as they learn the skills needed to work as counselors-in-training at Saint Columba House’s day camp.

Starting in February of each year, youth receive trainings on topics such as planning and animating activities, managing challengin behaviour, active listening, and healthy communication strategies. During this time, youth also volunteer weekly in Saint Columba House’s After School Program, and participate in 5 events in the community, learning about neighbourhood issues and making connections with other community members.

Come June, youth are hired as counselors-in-training and work full time at our Day Camp, building community and acting as role models for the children attending camp, as well as gaining hands-on experience often leading to future employment.

For more information, contact Akki Mackay our Teens Program Coordinator

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Get To The Pointe!

Get To The Pointe! is an alternative sexual health education program that works with high school students in Pointe-Saint-Charles and the South-West of Montreal, collaborating with schools and community partners to offer workshops on themes such as healthy relationships, safer sex, consent, and LGBTQ+ identities.

Our work focuses on providing students with accurate information regarding sexuality and sexual health, creating safe spaces for students to openly discuss issues relevant to their lives, and to provide opportunities for students to express themselves through various artistic mediums.

Our work with students is based on the principles of harm-reduction, non-judgement, youth leadership, and anti-oppression, and we recognize the importance of relationships and community building in the work we do.

For more information, contact Akki Mackay our Teen Programs Coordinator

 
 
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Bill's Community Bike Shop

Saint Columba House's very own bikeshop, "Bill's Community Bikeshop" is open to all the cyclists in the community!

Come say hello to Mat our mechanic, drop off your bike for a tuneup at a reasonable price, have a look at some of our built-up bikes for sale, or even learn with a mechanic how to make your own repairs! So many possibilities in our little bikeshop

The bikeshop's opening hours from April 25th to November 3rd are:

Thursdays - 10:00 to 19:00
Saturdays - Sundays 11:00 to 18:00

For more information, contact Mat Forget, our Bike Shop Coordinator

 

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Garden

Our rooftop garden is a sight to see! Together with our volunteers, our participants grow food on the terrace of Saint Columba House, and the food ends up in our kitchen to be cooked into delicious food for our Community Lunch and the Meals Delivery.

The garden is a great opportunity to engage all our participants such as the children from the Alternate School of the members of Hand-in-Hand and to teach where our food comes from.

For more information, please contact Patrick de Gruyter, our projects coordinator.

 

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Café Pronto

Saint Columba House presents Café Pronto, which has been revamped with several modifications, a calendar of activities and diverse discussion groups adapted to the individuals who attend it. The Café is a meeting place in the heart of the Pointe Saint-Charle district located at Saint Columba House. Open to all and at a very affordable price, the speakers are ready to welcome you, as well as the kitchen team, which cooks fresh and delicious food every day. Whether it's for a coffee to go, to do homework or just discuss the Café Pronto is open for you. This place of exchange is ideal to meet and integrate the neighborhood community. This place is added to the many programs of the House promoting the feeling of belonging to the community. Sewing workshop, animated games, discussion group, special guests and even techno advisers are on the program of the Café.

The speakers are there to listen to you, support you, accompany you and / or refer you to the place that suits your needs. The Café Pronto also gives itself as mission, not only of developed a sense of belonging in the community, but is active part of this one. Its presence is noted in several current social movements and aims to develop change. Adapting to the advice and needs of people, the Café remains open to all proposals for this place to be yours.

Open from 9 am to 13 pm from Monday to Friday, Café Pronto is a great place to discover.

Stay tuned on Maison Saint-Columba's Facebook for all the news about the Café.

Looking forward to speak around a coffee with you.

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Summer Camp

During the summer, Saint Columba House provides a Day Camp to the children, families and youth of Point Saint Charles. Our goal is to offer affordable quality services providing children with opportunities to learn and explore in a safe and supportive environment. The Camp Program focuses on promoting physical activity, healthy eating, and discovery of the community and environment. All activities function bilingually and the various cultures of all children are celebrated and valued within the program through song, diverse activities and exchange.

The program consists of weekly camp outings to places of interest and fun (i.e. regular beach trips, museums, nature outings, etc.). Local swimming excursions are organized twice weekly and games and activities in a number of local parks are organized daily. Special guests are invited on-site to run workshops on a variety of themes of particular interest to the children. During the last week of camp, parents are invited to join their children and learn what they have been working on throughout the summer. Throughout camp the children, staff and volunteers have wonderful experiences and leave with beautiful memories.

Our day camp would not be complete without our phenomenal team of Counselors and Counselors in Training. Hiring priority is given to youth from the community of Point St. Charles, and the job offers a positive first work experience for many by providing training, support and recognition. All counselors participate in a week training program to ensure a high quality program.

This program is made possible through the generous contributions of individuals, local companies and foundations, as well as Federal Government grants to create training and job opportunities for students (Summer Jobs Canada and Young Canada Works).

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Seniors Connection

Our seniors group meets once a week (and all year-round) on Fridays at 1 pm. While most of Saint Columba House’s programs are bilingual, this group takes place in English, simply because there are very few services for English speaking seniors in the Point. However, we have a lot of Francophones and Allophones in the group, so you might hear French, Spanish, German and Dutch as well!

The program consists of workshops (on subjects such as climate change or income inequality), fun activities such as playing games, BBQs or bowling and our “Afternoons with...”. These are afternoons designed by the participants themselves. In the past, they talked about subjects such as alcoholism, being part of the LGBTQ community and environmental challenges.

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