Big drop in the kettle: Fortis gives $1M for new Salvation Army centre in St. John's

The organization that helps others is getting a helping hand of its own.

Centre of Hope will have 20 housing units, food bank, healthcare and education resources

Christmas came early, and in the form of a big cheque, from Fortis Inc. to the Salvation Army's fundraising efforts to build its Centre of Hope. (Cal Tobin/CBC)

The Salvation Army's proposed Centre of Hope is getting a $1-million boost, thanks to Fortis Inc.

The company made the donation Monday at an event attended by Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Dwight Ball and others. 

"Today we are so grateful and we are excited that Fortis has chosen to be a part of this journey with us and are now adding their portrait to the many faces that care about our community and the people who need a chance to have their hopes realized as well," said Lt.-Col. Eddie Vincent, divisional commander of the Salvation Army.

The organization said it's the largest corporate donation it's received in the province.

The $14-million Centre of Hope will offer 20 supportive housing units, as well as on-site healthcare services, a food bank, social worker and education programs. 

"We are inspired by the safe havens and critical support provided by the Salvation Army in the heart of St. John's for over a century," said Barry Perry, president and CEO of Fortis.

Ball, too, had high praise for the organization, especially the hard-working volunteers.

"The Salvation Army, I would say that they are really the true stewards of goodwill, no matter where you go around the world ... we support what you do every single day," he said.

The design for the Centre of Hope on Springdale Street will include 20 affordable housing units, as well as space for services like a food bank, educational programming, and an on-site social worker. (Courtesy: Salvation Army)

Construction is expected to begin next spring and the facility is expected to be in operation by 2020. The Centre of Hope will be adjacent to Fortis headquarters on Springdale Street.


  • An earlier version of this story said the Salvation Army still needs to raise $7 million. But the church says the Fortis donation has helped it reach its goal.
    Dec 19, 2017 3:26 PM NT

With files from Jen White