A Message from Our CEO/Executive Director
A Message from Our CEO/Executive Director

For the past 125 years, Welcome Hall Mission has been supported by generous community members like you—ensuring that every person has a place in our society. The sense of inclusion that we all carry with us is the engine of change that transforms people’s lives.

Over the past few weeks, I have been discovering the Welcome Hall Mission community and I am very happy to be a part of it now! As the new CEO, I intend to work with our team of leaders to help serve our clients in new and better ways. We’re celebrating the Mission’s 125th anniversary this year and we’re anticipating many special events. So stay tuned as we prepare to celebrate 125 years of providing shelter, food and love to the marginalized people in our city of Montreal.

Thank you for your faithfulness to Welcome Hall Mission, especially over the Christmas season. In this newest edition of Info Mission, you can read about Richard’s story of transformation. We are also pleased to introduce you to LEXUM, a new donor company.

Happy reading, and please consider giving a special gift as temperatures continue to drop this winter!

God bless you,

Samuel Watts

CEO/Executive Director

Richard’s Journey
Richard’s Journey

Rediscovering Confidence and Dignity

Richard is 46 years old, and recently his life was completely transformed at Welcome Hall Mission. For 20 years, Richard had a stable career as a consultant for Canadian charities. He always loved his work and helping others. He was married for 13 years and was a committed partner, but eventually the good things in his life started to disintegrate. He went through a difficult divorce that took an emotional and financial toll and right around the same time, he lost his job.

He began to struggle with anxiety and depression as he searched in vain for new work. His self-confidence and self-esteem crumbled as weeks turned into months. Eventually, he began to run out of funds and started relying on friends for support.

After two years without work, he was completely discouraged and defeated and knew he was facing an important crossroads. If he didn’t do something drastic to change his situation, he was going to end up on the streets.

What he needed was to start over. His friends and family encouraged him to contact Welcome Hall Mission to meet with a caseworker. After that first meeting he was welcomed into a program where he could receive support for his emotional struggles as well as vocational training in his quest to change careers.

“They gave me a safe place, warm nutritious meals, time to heal, and strategies and skills to face my challenges.” —Richard

Richard has now been in supported housing at Welcome Hall Mission for almost a year. For the first three months, it was critical for him to stop and take stock, while gaining new employability skills. “I’m so grateful that Welcome Hall Mission was there for me,” said Richard. “I was able to turn to Welcome Hall Mission instead of turning to the streets. And when I did, I found people who understood me. They gave me a safe place, warm nutritious meals, time to heal and strategies and skills to face my challenges.”

Richard knows there is still work ahead but he also knows that the Mission will support him. Already, with the skills he has acquired, he has begun applying for new jobs. He has even landed some interviews! He knows that he can take the time he needs and continue to rely on the Mission’s support team as he gets his life back on track.

In his time at Welcome Hall Mission, Richard has been most impressed with the fact that each client is treated as an individual with their own unique potential. Everyone, no matter who they are or where they came from, is treated with respect and dignity.

Meet Lexum
Meet Lexum

A Story that Inspires Generosity!

Daniel Poulin is the CEO of Lexum, a Montreal software company. With a staff of 30, Mr. Poulin is a generous employer, and when he noticed a newspaper insert from Welcome Hall Mission one autumn weekend, the message touched him.

Every year, Mr. Poulin undertakes philanthropic activities and last year he wanted to go a step further. He felt it was important for Lexum to connect to a local organization. He also wanted to help the homeless who are trying to rebuild their lives. He challenged his team over the holiday season to raise $3,500 to provide 1,000 meals to homeless men and women at our emergency shelter. To motivate his staff, he offered to match all employee donations—and the rest is history. By Christmas, they had almost doubled their objective!

Mr. Poulin also formed a team who volunteered to serve a meal at our Emergency Shelter. We are incredibly thankful to Mr. Poulin and all of his employees who gave AND served so generously.

Socks and Undies Drive
Socks and Undies Drive

Please Provide Protection from the Cold

Once again this year we will be running Operation Socks and Undies, so please consider giving to the cause! Your gifts will allow us to purchase new pairs of clean, warm underwear and socks for those living on the streets. Dignity starts with the basics! Your gift of $10 goes a long way, buying 12 pairs of socks and five pairs of underwear. Online giving at www.welcomehallmission.com is the easiest way to provide life’s most basic needs.

Your donations of new socks and underwear are welcome too! We’ll be collecting gifts until February 28, and distributing them to Montrealers who are struggling against winter’s bitter cold.