Rotarians Donate $100,000 to Community Centre Renovations

May 28, 2013 – The media joined members of the Rotary Club of Victoria for a pre-renovation tour of the Downtown Community Centre (755 Pandora) today at 1:45 pm. The Rotarians are celebrating 100 years of service in Victoria this year, in part through this lasting $100,000 capital contribution to the community. A post-renovation tour will also be open to the media in the fall to report on the transformation of the public facility, which provides critical services to people who are homeless and vulnerable in the downtown core.

Rotary Club of Victoria logo“The very generous support of the Rotary Club of Victoria has made it possible to make upgrades to the Downtown Community Centre that we have needed for many years,” said Kathy Stinson, Cool Aid’s executive director. “We have been seeking funds for these capital improvements for several years but it was only when Rotarians generously stepped up that we were able to proceed. I cannot thank them enough.”


The Provincial Government also provided a contribution of $34,600 for the improvements:

  • Increasing size and functionality of front entrance and lobby area including lighting
  • Replace noisy and energy-inefficient gymnasium lighting
  • Convert unused mini-stage to storage for sports and event equipment
  • Repair to gym walls and additional sound proofing
  • Complete reworking of men and women’s washroom areas including low-flush appliances, new shower facilities, baby change station, better lighting, flooring and sinks
  • Expansion of computer room and replacement of aged counters/desk structure
  • Larger janitor room
  • and more

“To honour 100 years of service in Victoria, local Rotarians wanted to make a significant contribution that would help others for many years to come,” said Rotary Club of Victoria President Rosalind Scott. “We chose the Downtown Community Centre because of its dedication to youth and adults who need help and are taking steps to improve their own health and situation.”

In the past decade alone, the Club has provided over a million dollars to a wide range of community groups and organizations touching every age group and social status. Whether it is a child requiring special medical care or equipment not provided for by health services or an organization looking for seed money to get established, the Victoria Rotary Club has been there to lend a hand.  A partial list of recipients of Victoria Rotary Club assistance includes: Read Victoria, Mustard Seed Food Bank, Rainbow Kitchen, the CNIB, Victoria Riding for the disabled, Victoria Police Victim’s Services, Esquimalt Neighbourhood House Assoc., Our Place Street Ministry, Victoria AIDS resource centre, Sooke Family Resource Centre, Fairfield Community Association, Vancouver Island Science Fair, Victoria Cool Aid Society, Prostitutes Empowerment Education and Resource Society, The Prostate Centre and the Mount St. Mary Foundation.


The Victoria Cool Aid Society builds homes, lives and community. We create opportunities for people who are homeless or living in poverty. We make a difference through housing, health care, support and emergency shelters. Founded in 1968, Cool Aid helps over 10,000 people in the Capital Region every year.

Members of Rotary in Victoria are celebrating a century of “Service above Self” during 2013.  The Rotary Club of Victoria was established on Nov. 14, 1913 as the 90th club in the world.  Forty-one charter members joined Frank Higgins as the first president for the inaugural banquet at the Empress hotel.  The first secretary was Boer War veteran Capt. Tom Goodlake who held the post for 20 years before serving a term as president.  Over the years, club presidents included Victoria area mayors and several provincial members of the legislative assembly, some that were cabinet ministers.  Hockey legend Lester Patrick was president in 1921-22.