Understance Shelters  

This holiday season, Understance is partnering with two amazing organizations to provide shelter and warm meals to the homeless. From November 2nd to December 26th, Understance will be donating 10% of our gross profits to support the Downtown Eastside Women’s Center and the Lu’ma Native Housing Society. We'll be providing a direct monetary donation to the organizations, with no restrictions on how they can spend it. Every purchase made will directly contribute to helping those who need it most. 

We are first and foremost a customer focused company. But we are also a company dedicated to giving back to our local community.

Why homelessness?  

Housing insecurity is a systemic issue that is especially precarious in the cold winter months. Vancouver (home of Understance HQ) has one of the highest populations of homeless people in North America, with the downtown east side neighbourhood having the lowest GDP per capita on the continent. Women of color and indigenous women are disproportionately represented in the homeless population and face many barriers to accessing stable and safe long-term housing. We wanted to do something to help the most vulnerable members of our community by providing both monetary and product donations.

Our Charity Partners

Downtown Eastside Women’s Center (DEWC)

The Downtown Eastside Womens Center (DEWC) provides low-barrier shelter services to women in the downtown eastside neighbourhood. They shelter over 300 women every night and provide hot meals to over 700 women daily. The DEWC provides support services including counselling, housing advocacy, indigenous cultural programming and Chinese seniors outreach. The organization relies completely on donor and government funding, which has been spread thin due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. They currently have a waiting list for their shelters and mental health counselling. Visit their website [https://dewc.ca/] if you’d like to donate directly to the organization. 

Lu’ma Native Housing Society

Lu’ma Native Housing provides safe, affordable transitional and long-term housing to indigenous people facing homelessness and housing insecurity. Their goal is to build, own and operate affordable housing. They provide a broad range of services that improve the social determinants of health including an indigenous medical centre, youth mentorship, and outreach programs. In 2004, Lu’ma Native housing established the Aboriginal Patient’s Lodge. The lodge is a one-of-a-kind housing and healing space that was established to provide culturally safe accommodation to individuals and families that are receiving care in Vancouver medical centres. Lu’ma Native Housing is a national leader in indigenous-led solutions for affordable housing in Canada.