The vision of our Legacy donor and the work of Hyland joins a long tradition of enterprising compassion that has been a part of MCC’s history since the beginning. This entrepreneurial spirit can be found in numerous initiatives over the years, including MCC thrift shops and the bustling MCC Centre today.
MCC Thrift began in 1972 when a group of enterprising volunteers came up with a creative solution to the increasing challenges of sending used clothing overseas. Today there are over 100 MCC Thrift shops across North America including 10 in BC, generating millions of dollars to assist vulnerable people. The MCC Centre was born out of the need for expansion due to the increasing growth of MCC Thrift in Abbotsford. In 2010, MCC leaders approached friends in the business community to help find the best way forward.
Fred Strumpski was one of those capable leaders who collaborated in developing the vision for what today is the MCC Centre and Endowment Building. Fred encouraged MCC leaders not to just think of the next 5 to 10 years, but to look to the next 40 to 50 years. With Fred’s support as chair of the development and building committee, and as a champion in the business community, MCC moved forward with an entrepreneurial vision and purchased 8.5 acres on Gladys Avenue for two buildings. The vision for the MCC Centre was to provide space for ministry today. The vision for the Endowment building was to generate rental income to support MCC ministry, and to anticipate the long-term growth of MCC.
Through the generosity of MCC supporters, fundraising goals were achieved to pave the way for a ground- breaking ceremony in June of 2013. By the fall of 2014, the MCC Centre was opened and a ribbon cutting ceremony was attended by over 500 supporters and hundreds of customers.
Today, the MCC Centre is a place that hums with entrepreneurial activity. It houses one of the largest thrift shops in BC, with around 300 volunteers who have generated over $1.2 million to assist vulnerable people this year. The MCC Centre also houses the material aid warehouse that ships thousands of relief kits and other essential supplies to uprooted and vulnerable people; a Ten Thousand Villages store that sells the products of hundreds of hardworking families in the developing world; the Common Place Café that serves volunteers and customers; MCC programs that assist vulnerable people in our community; and our head office for BC.
When our Legacy donor saw MCC Thrift Shops and other enterprising MCC activity over 10 years ago, supported by hundreds of volunteers, he was inspired and encouraged. It was the long track record of the faithful stewardship and entrepreneurial spirit of MCC that gave him the confidence to donate his properties to MCC. Together, we share a vision to hold and manage his properties like an endowment, with the capacity to generate income to support the ministry of MCC for generations.