EventMobi’s 150 Days of Action: Dustin’s Volunteer Story With Yonge Street Mission

150 days of action volunteer story yonge street mission

On July 1st, 2017, EventMobi kicked off a new company-wide volunteer program called 150 Days of Action. The initiative is our way of celebrating Canada’s 150th milestone anniversary by giving back to the community through volunteering, and to inspire our employees, i.e. Mobiers, to be helpful and empathetic — two key values that are at the core of our company and part of Canadian culture.

The EventMobi 150 Days of Action program empowers Mobiers to pursue volunteer experiences they care about, and share reflections on what they learned.  

Dustin Zender is an Account Manager at EventMobi and shares his experience volunteering for Yonge Street Mission.

Serving Those in Need at The Yonge Street Mission

I had the privilege of serving a hot meal to youth-in-need at Yonge Street Mission’s (YSM) Evergreen Center. For over 121 years, YSM has provided wraparound support and services for individuals, families, children, youth, and entire communities living with chronic poverty.

YSM’s Evergreen Center is specifically dedicated to the care and support of Toronto’s street involved youth. Here, youth can receive a hot meal, free health care services, and assistance finding employment. More than that, it provides youth with a sense of community and hope; a tangible life line to help them realize a better future is possible.

This volunteer day was especially important as it was the last meal being served in their iconic 381 Yonge St. location. This was the first building purchased by YSM back in 1904. Imagine that – almost 115 years of service in Toronto! How many countless meals were served? How many lives were changed? And yet, there I was, lucky enough to cap it off by serving the last meal in that location. I felt honored.

A special thanks to EventMobi for supporting me with this initiative. The 150 Days of Action program afforded me an unforgettable experience. The atmosphere that day reflected the celebration of the momentous occasion. Balloons hung from the rafters, a stage was set for youth to sing karaoke, and staff from past and present were invited to re-connect and reminisce.

This volunteer opportunity also held significant meaning for me as I had previously worked at YSM for over two years. I felt worlds colliding. Not only was I able to make a positive difference, but I was able to see old friends and familiar faces of staff I once worked with and youth I once served. This was all thanks to EventMobi’s dedication to help make a difference in the local community.

This year, YSM moves into their new building located at 365 Spadina St. This new and improved space offers more square footage which will allow them to serve more youth, thus having a greater impact in the Greater Toronto Area.

I want to leave you with a quote that I read very recently. During the summer, YSM did a survey asking 50 youth how they were doing and how they could improve their care. One youth provided the following answer to the question, “What is your best experience at Evergreen?”

“My best experience at Evergreen were the Christmas celebrations. There was food and the staff was serving us, there was a whole celebration going on with games, giveaways, and karaoke. And we also got a chance to pick some gifts. To be honest, I had never received so many and useful gifts in my entire life. The Christmas celebrations at Evergreen were the best I had in my whole life.”

If you’re looking to make a difference, please consider making a donation to the Yonge Street Mission. Your kindness will provide hundreds of homeless youth with meals, as well as clothing, health and dental care, employment and housing support. But most importantly, you’re giving homeless youth access to a safe haven where they’ll be greeted by a friendly face and shown unconditional love and support from staff and volunteers alike.

Want to read more about EventMobi’s 150 Days of Action initiative?

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