COVID-19 Benefits Update

  • CERB payments have been extended from 24 to 28 weeks and after that, those who are eligible for EI will get a minimum of $400/week for at least 26 weeks
  • a new benefit for those not EI eligible will provide $400/week for 26 weeks
  • there is also a $500/week sickness/care giving benefit for those who need it
  • GIS and the Allowance for seniors, GST/HST and child benefits are all based on the previous year’s income. These benefits were extended to the end of Sept. even if 2019 taxes were not filed in Apr. but taxes need to be filed by the end of Sept. or those benefits will stop in Oct.
  • eviction orders can now be enforced in Ont. if tenants are in rent arrears
  • OW and ODSP recipients can receive $100 for individuals and $200 for families to assist with extra costs for cleaning supplies, food, clothing and transportation due to COVID-19
  • Brantford Transit resumed charging fares in Aug.

A helpful website for determining eligibility for benefits can be found at financialreliefnav.org

Furniture Donations Now Accepted

We are (finally) ready to resume acceptance of your generous donations of furniture.

Our priority continues to be furniture essential to the lifestyles of those we serve. That would include something to sit on, sleep on, eat at – of modest sizes as so many of us now live in smaller spaces. Out of respect for all of our customers we require that the items be clean and in good shape.

Because of pandemic restrictions, we must handle all donations carefully, for the safety and comfort of all of our customers and volunteers. One major precaution is that all donations are quarantined for a period of time when they are received before they are processed by our volunteers. For this reason the following restrictions are in place:

  • Drop off of furniture items can be arranged by appointment.
  • Pick up of items (usually on a Saturday, from a sheltered outdoor location only) can be arranged.

Email ssvpbrant@gmail.com, ideally attaching picture(s) of item(s) on offer, or call 519-751-0143 to make arrangements.

Thanks to all of our generous donors for your patience and for your ongoing support of our service to those in need in Brantford and Brant County.

The Energy of Our Young(est) Volunteers

All of the volunteers at SSVP Brant Thrift Store are young at heart, regardless of their chronological age. However this summer, additional lively young volunteers arrived to assist our usual crew.

At the pre-sorting table, Quin (Gr. 9 at Assumption College) has been assisting Grandma Rita with her tasks.

In new volunteer roles necessitated by the pandemic, Ally (Gr. 12 at North Park Collegiate) and Kylie (Gr. 12 at Assumption College) have been greeting customers, explaining our hygiene and physical distancing precautions as well as disinfecting shopping carts.

When Julian (Gr. 9 at St. John’s College) has arrived each Wednesday with his grandfather, volunteer Edwin, he has jumped into whatever task awaits, especially lots of sorting: food donations, hangers, clothing and lots of other stuff.

When Charlie (Gr. 10 at Assumption College) has come along with grandmother Elaine, he has proven to be a “doer”, both receiving donations and pre-sorting them under the direction of volunteer Theresa.

Volunteer Wies’ granddaughter Sophie (from Patrick Fogarty Catholic Secondary School in Orillia) shared her years of experience with SSVP Brant as she returned for a working visit at the sorting table.

With much appreciation for this sharing of their energy and enthusiasm we wish our young volunteers well as they return to whichever version of school they have chosen. And we are excited to know that some of them will be returning to help periodically in the next months as their schedules permit.

Volunteer experience (40 hours total) is currently required as part of the graduation requirements for high school students in Ontario. Also, the commitment, work ethic and community spirit demonstrated by such activity is recognized positively when students apply for post-secondary scholarships or bursaries.

Any high school student wishing to volunteer during the school year is very welcome to join our team at SSVP Brant Thrift Store. To explore this possibility contact us at ssvpbrant@gmail.com.