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Two Vancouver organizations get new buildings to serve rape survivors and queer community

QMUNITY and WAVAW will receive new locations to enhance delivery of community programs.
Vancouver city council approved leases to two social service organizations on July 20, QMUNITY and WAVAW. (File photo)

The City of Vancouver announced Wednesday (July 20) that two local social service organizations will receive new spaces to enhance delivery of their integral community programs.

Leases were approved by city council for QMUNITY, a non-profit organization working to improve create a safe space and improve the lives of LGBTQ2SAI+ people in Vancouver through community initiatives, and WAVAW, a rape crisis centre providing support services for survivors of sexual violence.

QMUNITY will receive a 17-storey mixed-use building alongside 154 social housing units on 981 Davie St. Construction is expected to begin within the next year and should be completed in 2025. 

WAVAW will be relocated to a City-owned building alongside other community-based social service organizations and is expected to reopen in the new space in early 2023. 

"This new permanent location will help QMUNITY expand their work and reach even more people. And perhaps most importantly, it will be a visible meeting place, a tangible symbol of how taking up space – real physical space – matters," said Vancouver mayor Kennedy Stewart in a statement. 

"I am also pleased to have WAVAW join other social service organizations in a new location. Together, these organizations provide critical support services to equity-denied individuals and help create a more inclusive and just Vancouver.” 

The new locations provide for office administration and multi-purpose spaces to accommodate much-needed programming, including culturally safe gatherings, workshops, counselling and educational events, details a press release from city council.