Concert Fundraiser for Bloor Lansdowne Community Dinner

Bloor Lansdowne Community Dinner presents

A Cup of Cold Water

in concert, Saturday May 23rd at 7:00 pm

Where: 1307 Bloor Street West, Toronto, Ontario

South side of Bloor Street, just west of Lansdowne, steps from the Lansdowne TTC subway stop, extra parking at the Value Village next door

Why?

A “Pay What You Can” fundraiser with all proceeds going to support the weekly Wednesday night community dinner. For over a year BLCF has been hosting a free meal program for residents of the neighbourhood – homeless or under-housed, lonely seniors, young single parent families, residents of nearby transitional housing and the working poor. Every week we have more than sixty guests, some nights serving over one hundred home-cooked meals.

This is not a “soup kitchen’ program. It’s more like inviting neighbours over for dinner. Developed and operated in partnership with Project417. The tables are set, the ambiance is friendly and we serve our guests at the table restaurant style – hearty and homemade meals and tasty desserts. Dinner is served fr0m, 6 to 8pm. All night there is live music – folk, roots rock, acoustic – often featuring our friend Terry, guitarist / vocalist and songwriter of the duo A Cup of Cold Water.

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BLCF Bloor Lansdowne Community DinnerBloor Lansdowne CommunityDinner is hosted by the Bloor Lansdowne Christian Fellowship at the church located at 1307 Bloor Street West, where they have been serving the local area for more than 70 years.

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Come on down for a great night out and help feed the hungry right in our neighborhood. Questions, call (416)535-9578

On the web at blcf.info

Visit the Facebook group

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Panhandlers Feeling Effects Of Staggering Economy

A great article and video of many of our homeless friends panhandling and the impact of the current downward economic trend. From that article, they interviewed and photographed our good friend Terry, busking on Queen:

Source: citynews.ca – “Huddled in an abandoned store front stoop on Queen West, Terry is playing the guitar with gusto when I approach him.  He isn’t a panhandler, he stresses, and never begs for money.  But he does rely on the generosity of others to get by.  He’s been busking for 12 years and admits he’s noticed a slow down lately.

“It affects everybody, from the guy who’s making the most money to the guy who’s making the least money.  It’s like a trickle down type thing.  If they’re not making as much money they’re not dropping as much money.  People are depressed, angry, you can literally see it, like when it went downhill with the U.S. stocks, you could literally see it.  People look tired, people look fed up, worried, concerned.

Terry and friend...

“There’s no security anymore.  Those people work really hard and they lose it all.  They invest in stocks and think that it’s going to be good, and it ends up falling through.” [end of excerpt]

I also have a great video of Terry and friends busking in the same spot two summers ago. Click here to see the YouTube video. I used to busk with them myself, and jam at the Knox Out-of-the-Cold youth dinner too – The Knox program (founded by Joe at Project417) starts up again next Tuesday to run through the winter: a great home-cooked hot meal, foodbank, clothing, haircuts and dye-jobs, open mic and more – all for street youth 25 (ish) and under. And don’t forget our Wednesday nite Community Dinner, free to all, over at Bloor Lansdowne. If panhandling takes are down, I expect we’ll see more of our friends at those meals. I know we’re not seeing too much of a decrease in our street friends when we go out distribute bag lunches. We have a team out tonite taking sixty meals and I’ll post an update.

There’s quite a few of us here at Project417 who are involved as volunteers in trying to get an alternative to the current “street” newspapers our homeless friends can sell. It should improve the take, and provide a dignified alternative to panhandling. Hopefully, and here’s the tough part, it will be a real community effort, with top down involvement from our street friends. Come back and check out the Mission Log for updates.
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BIG on Bloor Festival June 21st

Saturday June 21, Bloor Street West will be “car free” from Christie Pits Park to Lansdowne from 1pm to 9pm. Celebrate local community, business, arts and culture. Join the festival. Sell something, share something, teach something
—use your imagination! Visit Bloor Lansdowne Christian Fellowship & Project417.com
At 6:00 pm, World’s Biggest Dinner Party!

Jan. 21, 2009 update – Get ready for Big on Bloor 2009

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Bloor Lansdowne Community Dinner – Toronto

Every Wednesday night the Bloor Lansdowne Christian Fellowship Church (1307 Bloor St. W) opens its doors to the community to serve a free home-cooked meal to the homeless, lonely and marginalized members of this Toronto community. Volunteers help with everything and make friends and share conversation with the guests – real community development. Make poverty history!

Visit the website at blcf.info

updated Jan. 21, 2009

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