Board of Directors 2014-2015

Left to Right (Back Row): Rafael (RJ) Aquino, Alexandra Gunn, Patricio Ibarra, Paula Lindner, Jenny Peng.
Left to Right (Front Row): Julie Linkletter, Ann (Muriel) Rivard, Daniel Louie, Jean Kavanagh.
Absent: Oscar Allueva, Natasha Dickson, Joshua Hergesheimer and Cassandra Ly.


click here to read biographies

Rafael RJ Aquino
RJ co-founded Tulayan, an organization that reintroduces young Filipino-Canadians to their culture, heritage and language. Wanting to plant firm roots in the city of Vancouver he has become more involved in municipal matters and last ran for City Council in 2014 with OneCity, a new municipal political party. When he's not managing projects for his day job or organizing workshops and conferences or nerding out over productivity tools, he gets a workout trying to keep up with his two young children and his wife.

Alexandra Gunn
Alexandra Gunn has lived in the neighbourhood for almost all her life. She has a strong interest in community development and social justice and wants to make the community a better place for everyone. Alexandra has an undergraduate degree in business, sociology and anthropology, and a post-baccalaureate certificate in teaching. She has worked in non-profit organizations, post-secondary institutions and government. She currently works as a career specialist. In her spare time, she likes to hike, climb mountains and volunteer.

Patricio Ibarra
Patricio moved to Renfrew-Collingwood with his wife in 1998 and since then has participated in programs and services out of CNH. Patricio has extensive experience participating in Boards of non-profit societies and has volunteered with several community organizations. Patricio is a program advisor with the Economic Immigration Program of the BC government and has 24 years of experience in the provision of social and immigrant services, strategic planning, program design and evaluation and community development. Patricio looks forward to continuing with his volunteer work in CNH's Board (he has sat on the Board for the past eight years) to improve the quality of life for Renfrew-Collingwood residents.

Paula Lindner
Paula owns her own business in the Hastings-Sunrise area, a local wool and fibre store named Baaad Anna's Yarn Store. Previous to venturing into entrepreneurship, Paula worked for 15 years in non-profit management in organizations such as St. Paul's Hospital Foundation, the Alzheimer's Society of BC, BCIT Foundation, and McGill University. Paula completed her Masters in Philanthropy and Development at Saint Mary's University of Minnesota and graduated with a BA in Psychology and Philosophy from SFU. Paula has also worked as a journalist for the English section of Radio Praha and the Prague Post. When she is not working, Paula chases after her two very active daughters who attend the Collingwood Early Learning and Care Centre. She also enjoys knitting and playing field hockey, albeit not at the same time.

Jenny Peng
Jenny has called the Renfrew-Collingwood neighbourhood home since 2006 after moving from Montreal to study at UBC. Throughout her undergraduate years and after, she volunteered at the CNH Youth Centre and Morning Star Breakfast Program where she made many friends over the years. As a journalist, Jenny gets to interview people from all walks of life and inform readers about current events. Some of those stories include how the rise in fuel prices affects children living all over BC and how the local Safeway is having an impact on Collingwood's grocery stores. Her work can be seen in the Vancouver Courier, The Voice, Sustainability Television, Renfrew-Collingwood Community News and Taipei Times. Most recently, she was acknowledged for strengthening human relations with the Langara Peace Prize.

Julie Linkletter
Julie has two daughters who attended Collingwood Neighbourhood House's (CNH) child care programs. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from UBC and a Certificate in Fundraising Management from BCIT. She works at UBC as a fundraising researcher. Julie enjoys spending time with her family and volunteering in her community as a Board member of CNH. She is proud to be part of this community, where she and her family have lived since 2004.

Ann (Muriel) Rivard
Ann was born in Vancouver, BC and has lived here all of her life. She has lived in the Collingwood Tower Seniors' Building for the last 15 years. After reading a sign in her building's lobby she joined a CNH-led group teaching English to Collingwood Tower residents. She was quickly recruited as an English-speaking helper. When she learned about the seniors' Monday morning Walking Club at CNH, Ann joined the 20 or more people that come each week, enjoying a walk and coffee and treats afterwards. She really enjoys the days when the weather is too challenging and the seniors dance! Ann is also a member of the CNH Seniors' Advisory Group. She said she has enjoyed serving on the CNH Board of Directors.

Daniel Louie
Daniel Louie is a native Metro Vancouverite along with his wife Karen and their three children. He is the pastor of Urban Village Church, a diverse congregation that has been a part of the Collingwood neighbourhood since 2008. Before going into Christian ministry, Daniel was in the financial services field with the CIBC at Kingsway and Joyce. Daniel's ongoing hope is to see people of diverse backgrounds mobilize for the betterment of their neighbourhoods through their gifts and talents, whether as a resident, a volunteer, business, or community group. When not meeting people in the community, Daniel enjoys a variety of sports, playing music, and being the daddy cheerleader at his kids' activities.

Jean Kavanagh
Jean has lived in Renfrew-Collingwood for ten years and loves living across from the Renfrew Ravine and occasionally walking the labyrinth. She was delighted to have the opportunity to join the CNH Board and learn more about the community. Jean is the Media Relations Specialist at Metro Vancouver, and has worked in communications and journalism, holding senior positions in the government and non-profit sectors and was a reporter in Vancouver, Toronto and Central America.

Oscar Allueva
Oscar has lived in Collingwood since 1995. Oscar is a lawyer practicing in the area of labour and employment. Oscar currently holds the position of Manager of Labour Relations for BC Rapid Transit Co. He previously worked as Counsel, Labour and Employee Relations, with Transit Police and before that practiced law with the firm of Farris, Vaughan, Wills & Murphy in Vancouver. Oscar has also worked at Worksafe BC in the Review Division. Oscar is a former social worker and a former staff director and Co-Executive Director of CNH, having worked at CNH for 11 years before becoming a lawyer. Oscar has been involved in volunteer work for many years.

Natasha Dickson
Natasha Dickson is the Vice President of Operations for Vancouver Film Studios and Pacific Backlot Services – Canada's largest film and television studio complex. She has a Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) from the University of British Columbia and a post-graduate diploma in Human Resources Management from BCIT. Natasha's areas of expertise include multi-site operations management, strategic planning, customer service, change management, equipment knowledge and client service.

Joshua Hergesheimer
Joshua holds a Bachelors degree in Philosophy from UBC, a Masters degree in Human Rights from the University of Sussex, and a Master of Science in Nationalism and Ethnicity from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Though he has had many jobs – ranging from ESL teaching to tour guiding, writing to sheep farming – he would describe himself as a freelance journalist and photographer. He is interested in exploring how Renfrew-Collingwood's ethnic, religious and cultural diversity can be channeled towards creating sustainable, vibrant and welcoming public spaces in the midst of Vancouver's rush to urbanize and develop.

Cassandra Ly
Cassandra Ly is currently a student at UBC in the Global Resource Systems Program and is an avid volunteer in the Renfrew-Collingwood neighbourhood on unceded Coast Salish territories. She has participated in a variety of initiatives and groups, such as the Peer Prevention Education Program and the Renfrew-Collingwood Food Security Institute. With a strong passion for community development, food security, and social justice organizing, she enjoys working collaboratively with community members to positively enrich CNH and the lives of all staff, youth, adults, and seniors. Cassandra is also a Community Day Program Coordinator at Renfrew-Collingwood Seniors' Society and a Program Assistant at Renfrew Park Community Centre. Encouraged by the community's incredibly resilient spirit, Cassandra will be volunteering in Renfrew-Collingwood for many years to come.

Staff Directors Team

Left to Right:
January Wolodarsky, Director of Community Development
Paula Carr, Community Strategist
Michael McLenaghen, Director of Community Services
Sharon Gregson, Director of the Early Years
Jennifer Gray-Grant, Executive Director
Kulwant Kaur, Director of Operations

President's and Executive Director's Report

A Message from the President and ED:

First Nations drummers beat a celebratory rhythm, members of the Collingwood Legion proudly hoisted the Canadian flag, children on decorated bicycles rode alongside their bubble-blowing families, colourful stilt-walkers towered over the crowd, many in the parade waved small Canadian flags, shovels or trowels and a Filipino band played joyful tunes. This was the parade to the ceremonial ground-breaking for the site of Collingwood Neighbourhood House's new annex, planned to open in 2018.

In true CNH fashion, the event was a mix of staff, volunteers, participants, area service providers and politicians. It was also held in partnership with MOSAIC, which will be located in a separate space in the same development, and served as a great way to welcome them to the neighbourhood.

CNH's new annex will be located in a new tower that will sprout and grow over the next two years on Vanness Avenue, off Boundary Road. The annex is welcomed by CNH and our neighbourhood which desperately needs more multipurpose space to accommodate our growing, diverse neighbourhood's desire to come together to learn, celebrate and share the many skills and assets we have in our community.

While we celebrate the growth of space and the opportunities it will bring to our neighbourhood, we also take a moment to thank and celebrate one of the people who worked tirelessly, over many years, to bring Renfrew-Collingwood neighbours together to discover, learn, share and celebrate.

CNH's longest-serving staff person, Paula Carr was CNH's long-time Executive Director and, for the past five years, CNH's Community Strategist for Renfrew-Collingwood Intercultural Development. Before moving on to other opportunities this past year, Paula worked for 27 years at CNH connecting with people, hearing their dreams, hopes and desires and bringing them together to help them make those collective dreams a reality.

Paula served as a mentor to many, including Board Directors, staff, volunteers and local residents. Her hard work, combined with a vision of a strong, united, intercultural neighbourhood where all feel a sense of belonging, brought people together. Area residents, business people and service providers forged new, personal links, hosted warm events, preserved the area's history, created meaningful public art and engaged in a variety of playful activities. This work continues thanks to the strong foundation Paula helped lead and create.

So while we celebrate the new annex and the opportunities that space will offer our neighbourhood, we remain deeply thankful for the dedication from people like Paula and those who in large and small ways make our neighbourhood house and our neighbourhood so strong. CNH has an amazing team of people who work hard to ensure CNH operates so smoothly. Thanks to all of our staff, contractors, Board Directors and volunteers who make our neighbourhood house so special; thanks as well to our funders and donors who make our work possible.

AGM Minutes

Please click here to download the full minutes of Collingwood Neighbourhood House Society's

Financial Report 2014-2015

Please click here to download the full report on Collingwood Neighbourhood House Society's Financial Statements as at March 31, 2015.

Program Statistics 2014-2015

Please click here to download the full report on Collingwood Neighbourhood House Society's

Collingwood Neighbourhood House in Action

Stories of Impact

Nadia Khan

When Nadia Khan (left) moved to Renfrew-Collingwood in 2013, Collingwood Neighbourhood House (CNH) helped her family get established in Canada. She wanted her eight-year-old son to be involved in the neighbourhood, so she enrolled him in recreational activities at CNH. Ever since, she has been taking him to soccer and floor hockey classes and to the Saturday Youth Program, in which she also volunteers. Nadia's first year in Canada was spent adjusting to her new culture and figuring out what she would do. CNH Settlement Worker Karen Caguioa (left) helped Nadia and her husband set realistic career goals and connected them to volunteering and educational opportunities that would improve their prospects. For three months, Nadia spent her Friday mornings at CNH, teaching English as a second language to seniors. Through this volunteer work she became more comfortable with the Canadian work environment. Karen helped Nadia and her husband take advantage of the Government of Canada's 'Skills Connect' program, which covers two thirds of the cost of career training courses. Now Nadia is taking a Basic Counselling Skills course at Vancouver Community College and hopes to become a community counsellor. Nadia said she appreciates the support that CNH has provided to her family and the opportunities it has given them to better integrate into the community. "CNH is the best part of the neighbourhood," Nadia said.

Marlene White

Marlene White really got involved with CNH about five years ago when the Seniors Shuttle service started. She needed to take her sick bird to the vet quite often and the Seniors Shuttle—which offers affordable drives to seniors from their home to appointments—was the perfect solution. Marlene's connection to CNH deepened when she became a Connector for CNH's Better at Home program, a program that supports seniors in maintaining their independence at home and staying connected with their communities. As a Connector, Marlene works to connect the community to the Better at Home Program. She goes to the library, health fairs, and public events to introduce people to the program. In her own building, Marlene noticed a senior gentleman who was isolated and struggling to cope with daily tasks. She introduced him to Better at Home's Seniors Shuttle and light housekeeping service so he could more easily visit the doctor and also get some help with cleaning. Her work as a Connector has allowed Marlene to give back to her community. As Marlene said, "If we all do our bit, it's very helpful." Marlene's work has also reminded her of the pleasure of working with others. She said, "CNH is always such a positive place. People are always compassionate. I like to work in this environment."

Swarn Kaila

When Swarn Kaila (left) moved to Renfrew-Collingwood more than ten years ago, like many immigrant mothers, she felt quite isolated. Fortunately, an acquaintance introduced her to CNH's Family Place, a program for parents and caregivers of children newborn to six years old. At the time, her son Ashvyn was four years old and her daughter Arpan was seven months old. Swarn was initially very shy, but she came to Family Place almost every day. It gave her a sense of belonging to the community. She said she didn't have a single friend before coming to CNH, but after joining Family Place, she made a lot of good friends from many cultures. Swarn said her Family Place friends are like "a second family". Swarn developed a very deep relationship with Family Services Coordinator Satinder Singh. When Swarn faced challenges or felt depressed, Satinder always boosted her spirits, she said. Swarn's involvement in Family Place led to other opportunities for recreation, connecting with others, and volunteering. She has participated in community dinners, Zumba classes, and Neighbourhood Small Grants projects. Now that Swarn is working full time she's not able to come to Family Place as often, but she still meets her old Family Place friends for birthdays, lunches, and parties. Swarn describes her time at Family Place as her "golden time". Swarn's advice to new immigrant mothers: "At least come to Family Place one time. You will feel very welcome and supported. There is a lot of positive energy here."

Staff/Contractor Recognition

Over 25 Years

Satinder Singh

Over 20 Years

Alison Merton

Diana Taykandy

Kulwant Kaur

Michael McLenaghen

Teresita Nidua

Over 15 Years

Carmen Correal

Cheryl Hallman-Fung

Karl Chan

Margaret Wu

Maria Alpirez

Paul Reid

Ram Kaur Dhatt

Valeriano Asaldo

Lucinda Donaldson

Carmen Rosen

Mary Hoang

Over 10 Years

Adriana Contreras Andrea Holden Calee Christoffersen
Elizabeth Ramos Evelyn Grossmith Hung Yip Yan
Laura Contreras Marie Rencoret Sharon Gregson

Over 5 Years

Andrea Little Bharti Vardhan Emily Chan Jennifer Gray-Grant
Jessica Michelle Chu Julia Nicol Karla Avelar Lillian Kwon
Najia Elacel Peter Greenwell Richard Abed Rabbo Siobhan Barker
Valeria Mancilla-Reyes Vive Wong Ying (Tiffany) Ouyang

Collaborative Partners

We would like to express our sincere appreciation to all of our Collaborative Partners for their time and expertise in helping serve Renfrew-Collingwood residents and working with us to improve their quality of life.

African Stages Association of BC
AMSSA (Affiliation of Multicultural Societies and Service Agencies of BC)
Artists without Lodgings AWOL Collective
Association of Neighbourhood Houses
Bamboo Cafe
BC Aboriginal Child Care Society
BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres
BC Association of Family Resource Programs
BC Centre for Ability
BC Gymnastics Association
BC Hydro
BC Parks and Recreation Association
BC Society for Children & Youth
Books For Me! Literacy Foundation
Broadway Youth Resource Centre
Burnaby Volunteer Centre
CA Design Group Inc.
Canada Safeway - Kingsway & Tyne
Canadian Diabetes Association
Capilano University
Carleton Elementary School
Cedar Cottage Neighbourhood House
Chilean Co-op
City of Vancouver
Coalition of Child Care Advocates of BC
Coast Mental Health
Cobs Bread - Brentwood Mall
Collingwood Business Improvement Association
Collingwood Community Policing Centre
Collingwood Library
Collingwood Neighbourhood School
Collingwood Pioneers
Columbus Towers
Connect Consortium for ELSA Services
Decoda Literacy Solutions
Early Childhood Educators of BC
East Vancouver Nobody's Perfect Consortium
Eka Cooperative
Elite Landscaping
Engaged Immigrant Youth
Environmental Youth Alliance
Evergreen Community Health Centre
Evergreen Environment Protection Society
Evergreen Foundation
Families Branching Out Consortium
Family Services of Greater Vancouver
First Call: BC Child & Youth Advocacy Coalition
First Lutheran Church
First Nations Parent Club
Fresh Choice Kitchens
Frog Hollow Neighbourhood House
Government of BC
Government of Canada
Graham Bruce Elementary School
Grandview-Woodland Community Policing Centre
Greater Lower Mainland Regional Table on Homelessness
Greater Vancouver Food Bank
Green Thumb Theatre
Grenfell Elementary School
Gym Sense Gymnastics
Hastings North Business Improvement Association
Heritage Canada
Highland Gong Society
Highland Weaver's Collective
Housing Foundation of BC
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
HUSTLE-Men on the Move (How U Survive This Life Everyday)
Immigrant Services Society
Italian Cultural Centre
Joyce Street Area Planning Committee
Kids Up Front Foundation
Kickstart Arts
Killarney Community Centre - Youth Council
Killarney Secondary School
Kitsilano Neighbourhood House
Kiwassa Neighbourhood House
Kokoma African Heritage
Leonie Sandercock and Giovanni Attili
Little Mountain Neighbourhood House
London Drugs
LOVE (Leave Out Violence Everyone)
MOSAIC (Multilingual Orientation Service Association for Immigrant Communities)
Mount Pleasant Neighbourhood House
Neighbourhood Matching Funds
New Horizons for Seniors
Nighthoops Basketball
Nootka Elementary School
Norquay Elementary School
PACE Society
Pacific Community Resources Society
Pacific Immigrant Resources Society
Paul Dirks Design
Red Fox Healthy Living Society
Renfrew Elementary School
Renfrew Library
RC MAGA (RC Multicultural Artist Gathering)
Renfrew Park Community Association
Renfrew Park Community Centre
Renfrew Park Community Centre - Youth Council
Renfrew-Collingwood Area Services Team
Renfrew-Collingwood Food Security Institute
Renfrew-Collingwood Seniors' Society
Renfrew-Collingwood Youth Councils
Renfrew-Collingwood Youth Media
School Age Child Care Association of BC
South Vancouver Neighbourhood House
SPARC BC (The Social Planning and Research Council of BC)
Spectrum Society for Community Living
St. Mary's Church
St. Mary's Elementary School
St. Thomas Anglican Church
Starbucks - Boundary Plaza
Still Moon Arts Society
SWAN Vancouver Society
Ted X Renfrew-Collingwood
The Alan Cashmore Centre
The Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society/Community Angel Food Runners Program
Three Links Care Centre
Tree Project
UBC Child Care Services
UBC School of Kinesiology
United Way of Lower Mainland
University of British Columbia
Urban Native Youth Association
Urban Village Church
Vancity - Collingwood Branch #13 (Community Projects)
Vancity Foundation
Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre
Vancouver Board of Education
Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation
Vancouver Coastal Health Authority
Vancouver Film Studios
Vancouver Firefighters Association
Vancouver Food Policy Council
Vancouver Formosa Academy
Vancouver Foundation
Vancouver Native Health Society
Vancouver Police Department
Vancouver Public Library
Vancouver Storytellers' Association
Vancouver Technical Secondary School
Vantage Point
Variety Club
Wall Development
Wendy Frisby
Westcoast Child Care Resource Centre
Wilson Heights United Church
Windermere Family of Schools
Windermere Secondary School
WISH Drop-in Centre Society
YMCA of Greater Vancouver
YWCA (Young Women's Christian Association)

Main House Hours of Operation
5288 Joyce Street Monday to Friday, 8 AM to 9 PM Website:
Vancouver, B.C. V5R 6C9 Saturday, 6:30 AM to 8 PM Email:
Tel: (604)-435-0323 Sunday, 10 AM to 8 PM Facebook:
Fax: (604)-451-1191