Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively have made a generous donation to Covenant House in Vancouver and Toronto to support homeless, at-risk, and trafficked youth across the nation.
Vancouver-born Reynolds and his wife, American actress Lively, are donating $250,000 to Covenant House Vancouver and $250,000 to Covenant House Toronto.
Reynolds has been a long-time friend to Covenant House and "truly believes in supporting vulnerable young people," says Covenant House Vancouver in a news release.
Reynolds has chosen to use his donation as a "special matching gift" to encourage others to donate to Covenant House.
“Ryan and Blake truly understand that young people who are facing homelessness deserve unconditional love and absolute respect. Their generous donation and compassionate support mean so much to Covenant House and we are truly grateful for their continued friendship. Just like Ryan and Blake, we hope this gift highlights the value of each and every youth; and inspires others to open their hearts to those struggling with the crisis of homelessness,” shared Krista Thompson, CEO of Covenant House Vancouver.
“Covenant House provides love, hope and stability for at-risk youth who’ve fled physical, emotional and sexual abuse,” says Ryan, “They do the work of heroes. For us, helping Covenant House this way isn’t a donation, but an investment in compassion and empathy; something the world needs more of. The young people who pass through the doors of Covenant House more often than not have a story marked by extraordinary trauma. They are so much more than that trauma. They have so much to offer the world. Matching this gift is saying you believe in them. You believe in the power of compassion to transform the trajectory of a human being.”
Covenant House says the COVID-19 pandemic has presented it with "new and evolving challenges," and the organization continues to provide essential services to youth experiencing homelessness.
While the pandemic has impacted every youth in profound ways, exactly how depends very much on their own individual circumstances. Job losses, increased anxiety, and the opioid Crisis are just a few of the challenges youth are facing.