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Speeches to SAVE New Fountain Shelter in front of Vancouver Police Department at 2120 Cambie Street in Vancouve

April 22, 2011 2 comments

Funding for New Fountain Shelter will not be continued beyond April 30th, after which time it would be forced to close, putting people back on the streets!

A bit about the New Fountain Shelter:

Opened at Christmas in 2008, the New Fountain Shelter, funded for only 27 beds, regularly sleeps close to 40 people night after night. In addition to providing a temporary shelter for Vancouver’s homeless the New Fountain has connected over 300 people to safe, permanent housing and works hard to connect people to the medical and social services they need.

You can make a difference by emailing or phoning the mayor of Vancouver, the provincial government, BC Housing, or your federal government representative and tell them you feel housing for the homeless is important and necessary

*With thanks to Craig Sinclair for filming the following videos of Downtown Eastside folks speaking to SAVE the New Fountain Shelter

Below is a photo and video of Dalannah Gail Bowen

Below is a photo and video of Randy Comiso and his personal story of staying at New Fountain Shelter

Below is a photo and video of Sarah Blyth speaking to SAVE New Fountain Shelter in Vancouver Downtown Eastside (DTES)

AHA MEDIA at “Vancouver Street Soccer League vs City Hall” Soccer Tournament in Vancouver

December 7, 2010 1 comment

The Vancouver Street Soccer League Takes on City Hall

In a series of classic confrontations, Vancouver Street Soccer League (www.vancouverstreetsoccer.com) teams tested their skills not only against each other, but also against a City of Vancouver team lead by Mayor Gregor Robertson on Saturday, December 4 at Memorial South Park.

Many people contributed to the organization of the tournament and even Mother Nature chipped in by giving us a beautiful sunny day. Malcolm Bromley and the Park Board had an amazing new turf field for us to Christen with some soccer magic. Continuing their strong support of Street Soccer, the Portland Hotel Society provided tents, heaters, food and other pieces of the puzzle through our great PHS-based volunteers, including Kailin See and Sarah Blyth who had lead organizational roles. Snacks and drinks were generously provided by the Vancouver Food Bank. Andrea Reimer, Sarah Blyth, and Amy and Gregor Robertson recruited a strong team for the City. Ex-Vancouver Dream Catcher turned AHA Media reporter Peter Davies and Vancouver International Soccer Festival President Adri Hamael were quick to answer the call and then make all the right ones as referees. We also felt the love of Street Soccer friends across the country as everyone received a Street Soccer Canada toque from Paul Gregory and Wendy Perkins at SSC headquarters in Ontario. The live music by Good for Grapes completed the atmosphere, and Kurt Heinrich ensured the event got the attention of the city by once again attracting prominent media coverage (http://www.ctvbc.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20080124/BC_Vid_Newscast_080124/20091203?hub=BritishColumbiaHome ; pick the broadcast from Dec. 4 and advance to the 7-minute mark). As usual, the comprehensive account was also recorded by April Smith at AHA Media.

As hosts of the tournament, Portland FC (www.portlandfc.ca) setup camp on Field 1 for the duration. Team Canada veterans and new recruits alike made sure that points weren’t easily gained by the competition. Randy showed moments of goaltending brilliance reminiscent of his all-star performance against Mexico at the Homeless World Cup, while Hector, Rik, Frank, Sid, Peter and Patrick put on a passing display that was tastier than Prime Time Chicken.

Like the Montreal Canadiens of Vancouver Street Soccer, the Eastside Sun Eagles brought their proven formula of intensity and reliable play to the tournament. Playing coach Lotfi and Team Canada penalty-shot expert Robert lead usual suspects Virgil, Hudson, Saul, Carlos, Bryan, and Shamaly in a relentless attack that gave Mayor Robertson a loss to revisit in his mind through slow moments in Council Chambers over the coming months. Keeper Hector was stingier than Ebenezer Scrooge, allowing only a single goal the whole tournament.

Since steamrolling the competition in their Street Soccer debut in the February, 2010 Going For Gold tournament, the Aboriginal Friendship Centre has consistently raised the bar of competition for the other VSSL teams. Saturday was no exception as Mel, Shane, Dennis, Quoc, Jerry, Jake, Aaron, Joseph, Conrad, Dude, Ted, Enrique, and playing coach Brian rolled shift after skill-laden shift in a system that Alain Vigneault would have been proud of. With small nets making goals hard to come by, Brian and Enrique impressed by each rippling the mesh and then providing an encore.

Like a series of election night nail biters, the City team, bolstered by VSSL volunteers, squeaked out a collection of close victories, but couldn’t beat the eventual tournament champions. The one – nil win over Portland FC must have been sweet redemption for the now legendary 6-5 Portland FC triumph over the Mayor and City Council 11-aside in the teams’ only previous meeting. Street Soccer fans everywhere are already debating the likely outcome of a balance-tipping third game. Mayor Robertson delighted the populace with game-winning goal. Not to be outdone, and possibly a signal that he intends to run for office himself, Diego lead the way with three match-deciding markers. Chris, Zoran, Kurt, Barry, Adrian, Ron, and Andy provided a supporting cast with more style than City Hall’s art deco relief.

By all accounts, the favourites of the tournament were Portland FC Phoenix. Not intimidated by the greatest collection of Street Soccer talent ever accumulated in Vancouver, the VSSL’s first all women’s team stepped up and rolled out an inspired brand of football. In one close game after another, Phoenix averaged less than two goals against per game. A slim one to nothing scoreline was all that separated Phoenix from the Mayor’s team and their male Portland FC counterparts could also only manage one tally against them. Keeper and City Councilor Andrea Reimer served early and frequent notice that unwanted guests weren’t welcome in her goal crease. Amy and Carla showed the poise of experienced veterans, while Sarah, Kailin, and Heather proved quick studies from their time practicing with Portland FC. Christa (“iano Ronaldo”) revealed step-over moves that will be dancing in the heads of more than a couple defensemen this holiday season. Meanwhile, Paula had something to teach Ryan Kesler about being an effective two-way player by establishing a formidable presence at both ends of the field. Kayla, Claire, Tracy, Tanya and the rest of the team must have been fired up by Lauren’s surprisingly effective battle cry as they brought the fight to the guys match after match.

In the end, there could only be one winner and on this day, the North Shore Shields would not be denied. The mountain men from the other side of the water went undefeated through all five games. Only the Sun Eagles managed to avoid a loss to the Shields by clinging to a zero – zero draw. A true sign of a dynasty team is even scoring throughout the roster, and with Steve, Trevor, James, Fred, Ramin, and Alex all putting up numbers in the goal column, the Shields could be the team to beat for the foreseeable future. However, the 2-1 victory over Portland FC must have been bittersweet for Steve, Trevor, and James who were on loan from the home side. Only time will tell if a return of their services will brighten Portland FC’s fortune in the next tournament. Masoud, Mori and Nathan were solid when called upon and coach Dave did his best Sir Alex Ferguson impression to guide his team through five impressive results.

The next VSSL action takes place January 8, 2011 in North Vancouver as the North Shore Shields and the VSSL host the Kelowna Kodiaks. Will the newcomers from the Okanagan be easy pickings or craftier than the Ogopogo? Stay tuned.

Alan Bates

President, Vancouver Street Soccer League

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 3 of Street Soccer Vancouver Women’s team – PORTLAND PHOENIX practicing in Vancouver Downtown Eastside

November 4, 2010 2 comments

Day 3 of the new Street Soccer Vancouver Women’s team Portland Phoenix in Vancouver Downtown Eastside brought out sunny weather, smiles and sportmanship !!

Livestreaming Videos of our Soccer practice and games from a Nokia N97 mini cameraphone

Please see at http://www.qik.com/AHAMEDIA for live coverage for certain events

Below is a photo of Sarah Blyth of Vancouver Parks Board scoring a goal!!

AHA MEDIA at Woodwards community Thanksgiving dinner where today is proclaimed Vancouver Street Soccer League Day on Mon Oct 11, 2010

October 11, 2010 Leave a comment

AHA MEDIA was pleased to attend the Woodwards community Thanksgiving dinner on Mon Oct 11, 2010

Below is Peter Davies of AHA MEDIA with Dennis, a resident of Woodwards SRO

The Woodwards Atrium was beautifully transformed to a gorgeous dining room setting

Irwin Oostindie of W2 Community Media Arts with daughter

Below is Mayor Gregor Robertson with Patrick and Robert of Team Vancouver for Street Soccer

Below is Sarah Blyth with Jim Green speaking about Team Vancouver for Street Soccer that went to Brazil for Homeless World Cup 2010

Mayor Gregor Robertson proclaiming Vancouver Street Soccer League Day on October 11, 2010

AHA MEDIA filmed at Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010 Send Off to Brazil from Vancouver Downtown Eastside (DTES)

September 16, 2010 4 comments

History was made today for our eight lucky Street Soccer players chosen to play for Team Canada against 64 other countries in the world!  Downtown Eastside Vancouver was proudly represented today!

Below our Team Canada players eat a hearty meal of Eggs Benedict, Sausages and Potatoes, catered by Potluck Cafe in our neighbourhood

Below Rick proudly holds his baby boy

Kevin King packing his bag

Peter Zhou packing his bag and giving some excited thoughts!

Coach Alan Bates for Team Canada

Team Canada receives blessings and smudging from an Elder

Team Canada chants “CANADA” while holding their lucky and blessed “Warrior” feathers

Below is Robert Milton saying goodbye to “Red Eyes”, his guinea pig

Patrick, Co – Captain talks about drinking Fairlee Apple Juice while playing soccer

Kevin King, Co – Captain of Team Canada gives some thoughts on his day

Kevin and Patrick, C0 – Captains of Team Canada speak to the Press

Frank and Team Canada chant “CANADA”

Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010 singing Wave the flag

Peter Zhou and Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010 on the bus

Kevin King and Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010 singing

Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010 waving to CTV van

Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010 seeing CTV van

Kevin King, Co-Captain of Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010 speaking

Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010 with CTV cameraman

Rob Milton and Sarah Blyth of Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010

Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010 singing We are the Champions

Rob Milton, playfully does a “Tough Guy” pose

Team Canada for Homeless World Cup 2010 arrive at Airport

Good Luck Boys!! :)

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