Whistler Community Services Society (WCSS) executive director Jackie Dickinson opened her report on the state of the resort’s primary social service provider by talking about adversity—and how WCSS is not immune to the challenges seen in the broader Whistler community.
“What I’ve learned over the last year is that there continues to be challenges as an organization,” Dickinson said at the June 14 annual general meeting, held at the Maury Young Arts Centre.
“What I’ve also realized is what happens within the walls of Whistler Community Services, and the challenges we face as an employer, as an organization, it mirrors what’s happening in the community. We are not immune to adversity.”
Over the past year, WCSS saw yet another surge in the number of people requiring services, as inflation and rising housing costs resulted in a climbing demand for the food bank, emergency shelter space and outreach services.
The food bank saw 13,633 visits in 2022, a 36-per-cent increase over the last four years, with youth under 19 accounting for 1,345 of that, according to Dickinson. Pre-pandemic, that number commonly hovered around 2,500 visits a year. Read the full PIQUE article