Alexandra Neighbourhood House turns 100!

Camp games 1940s Since 1916, Alexandra Neighbourhood House has been serving the community of South Surrey and Crescent Beach. Now it’s celebrating its centennial with a Homecoming Festival on the lawn of Camp Alex, this Saturday, September 10, from 3 – 7 pm. United Way has supported this neighbourhood house for almost as long. People are invited to attend this family friendly-event that will include live entertainment, historical re-enactments, food trucks, a petting zoo, and a midway. Admission is free but donations at the gate will be accepted. Period costumes are encouraged! Alexandra Neighbourhood House started as a camp for orphans and children who couldn’t otherwise afford to go to camp back in 1916. Children enjoyed a month of sun, fun, and relaxation. The camp had high aspirations to help campers become better people:

“A camp has one primary duty and that is to see that every camper learns to become a better person by being at camp…our camp should be dedicated to the ideal that people come to know and respect one another by living and working together.”

Alexandra Fresh-Air Camp evolved into Crescent Beach Community Services, and finally, Alexandra Neighbourhood House. Over the years, services offered at the Camp have expanded to include a community kitchen, donated clothing and toys and services to older adults. The “Happy Old Age Club” started in the 1940s was the first seniors club on the Semiamhoo Peninsula. United Way has been a supporter of this community mainstay for decades. For example in 1932, when United Way of the Lower Mainland was known as the Vancouver Welfare Federation, we invested $7,052.67 into the Alexandra Fresh Air Camp. Community partners like Alexandra Neighbourhood House help United Way of the Lower Mainland achieve its vision of a healthy, caring, inclusive community for all. United Way actively invests in the Association of Neighbourhood Houses BC throughout the Lower Mainland. Alexandra Neighbourhood House has also benefited from The Vancouver Sun United Way Day of Caring. Last year a record number of BCAA volunteers showed up to do a camp cleanup. To learn more about the history of Alexandra Neighbourhood House, check out this video:

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