Originally story published in The Ubyssey
The UBC peninsula can feel far removed from the Downtown Eastside, Canada’s poorest postal code. The university is often lauded as an academic beacon, while the DTES is stereotyped as a blemish on the face of a polished and Olympic-ready Vancouver.
But through several innovative projects, many groups within the UBC community regularly connect with the much-maligned area. These projects help alleviate some of the neighbourhood’s problems and challenge its one-dimensional reputation as a slum.
“It’s not the mandate of the university, which is academically focused, to somehow solve poverty,” said Mary Holmes, who runs the Urban Aboriginal Community Kitchen Garden at the UBC Farm. “Still, our emphasis is around paving the pathway with kindness.”
As thousands of visitors swarm the city in February, many projects will feel the impact and be forced to adapt. The Ubyssey spoke to some of those planning for the Olympic rush. Continue reading