Volunteer Toronto’s Legacy Awards celebrates 25 Toronto volunteers for their outstanding contributions to the community. From mentors to fundraisers to educators, the Awards shine a light on the unspoken heroes whose efforts are often unknown outside their local community.
On April 18th 2017, in the lead up to National Volunteer Week, a private ceremony took place with the winners, nominators and special guests to celebrate their achievements.
Excerpt from Volunteer Toronto:
Marc Hull-Jacquin is the founder and Executive Director of The Shelter Movers of Toronto, a volunteer-based grassroots non-profit that provides free moving and storage services to women and children fleeing abuse.
In early 2016, Marc recognized a critical gap in the current social safety net: women fleeing abuse cannot safely gather their belongings when they leave a harmful home environment. Abuse survivors face a significant risk when they attempt to flee an abusive household. Through Marc’s tenacious drive, local businesses and over 130 dedicated volunteers are focused on a practical solution to this social problem. After one year in operation, Marc’s organization now serves 12 local shelters and social service agencies, and has served over 120 families requesting assistance.
Marc’s innovative service helps to break the cycle of violence by creating a safe, dignified space for women to restart their lives, free of violence. The Shelter Movers’ no-cost model is the only one of its kind in Canada, attracting attention from five other major Canadian cities looking to replicate this important service in their community.
Marc says he is inspired by the stories of courageous women and children fleeing abuse.
Volunteering opens you to people and life experiences to which you might otherwise never have access. It puts you in positions you never thought you could handle, and gives you confidence that real social change is possible.