Press Release: Megaphone receives a $25,000 Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund grant
VANCOUVER, BC, January 23, 2019 – Megaphone is pleased to announce it has received a $25,000 grant from the Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund to develop the Megaphone and Hope and Shadows vendor program, promoting mental health through access to meaningful employment and community engagement.
“Megaphone is excited to partner with Bell Let’s Talk. This grant will allow us to expand our program capacity to provide more meaningful work and supports to people experiencing poverty and homelessness,” says Jessica Hannon, Executive Director of Megaphone Magazine. “Each year, Megaphone trains more than 150 vendors across Vancouver and Victoria, helping them earn income through meaningful, dignified work.”
This funding will support more homeless and low-income vendors in Vancouver and Victoria by enabling Megaphone to hire two vendor coordinators and an assistant vendor coordinator. These resources will implement a recruitment strategy in both cities, including skills-building orientation sessions, a sales reward program, advanced skills workshops, peer mentorship, social services referrals, and individual coaching.
Further opportunities for vendor engagement include a peer-elected vendor advisory board, monthly vendor meetings, business workshops, and team-building events. Megaphone vendors experience many benefits from working: income, social interaction, self-confidence, a sense of purpose, and community connections.
“Bell Let's Talk is pleased to support Megaphone’s efforts to provide work and social engagement for low income and homeless people in Vancouver and Victoria,” said Mary Deacon, Chair of Bell Let's Talk. “Having doubled the annual Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund to $2 million in 2018, we are helping some 120 organizations across Canada, like Megaphone, that are making a difference for people affected by mental illness in the community.”
Bell Let’s Talk Day is January 30
The Bell Let’s Talk initiative promotes Canadian mental health with national awareness and anti-stigma campaigns like Bell Let’s Talk Day and significant Bell funding for community care and access, research and workplace leadership initiatives. On Bell Let’s Talk Day, January 30, Bell will donate 5 cents to Canadian mental health programs for each of the following interactions at no extra cost to participants:
- Talk: Every mobile call and every long distance call made by Bell wireless and phone customers
- Text: Every text message sent by Bell wireless customers
- Twitter: Every tweet and retweet using #BellLetsTalk, featuring the special Bell Let’s Talk emoji, and Bell Let’s Talk Day video view at Twitter.com/Bell_LetsTalk
- Facebook: Every view of the Bell Let’s Talk Day video at Facebook.com/BellLetsTalk and use of the Bell Let’s Talk frame
- Instagram: Every Bell Let’s Talk Day video view at Instagram.com/bell_letstalk
- Snapchat: Every use of the Bell Let’s Talk filter and video view
To learn more, please visit Bell.ca/LetsTalk.
About Hope in Shadows and Megaphone
Megaphone magazine offers employment and empowerment to people experiencing poverty. Megaphone publishes a monthly magazine and an annual calendar that are sold on the streets of Vancouver and Victoria by homeless and low-income vendors. Vendors buy each magazine for 75 cents and sell it for $2, and each calendar for $10 and sell it for $20. They keep the profit. By selling Megaphone and Hope in Shadows, people experiencing poverty, homelessness, and addiction or other health challenges can earn income through meaningful, dignified work.
For images of the cheque presentation, visit