Penticton’s PACE celebrates 20 years in the community

Penticton’s PACE workers at the landfill and at the e-waste recycling hub on Martin Street. The community organization is celebrating 20 years. (Submitted)Penticton’s PACE workers at the landfill and at the e-waste recycling hub on Martin Street. The community organization is celebrating 20 years. (Submitted)
A PACE worker separates the different parts of a matress for recycling at the landfill. This is just one of the contracts PACE has for empolying people in the community who face barriers to employment. (Submitted)A PACE worker separates the different parts of a matress for recycling at the landfill. This is just one of the contracts PACE has for empolying people in the community who face barriers to employment. (Submitted)

To celebrate PACE’s 20th anniversary of creating meaningful work opportunities for people who face barriers to employment, they are hosting prizes and events for the entire month of October. Everyone who brings in a computer tower or laptop is entered in to draw for a $50 gift certificate.

A Power Recycle event that was to take place on Oct. 16 has been postponed. No new date has been announced.

PACE is adding a new monthly service for local businesses: a free e-waste pickup for small businesses in Penticton.

In 2001, PACE got its name: Penticton and Area Cooperative Enterprises.

Over the past two decades, PACE has been the community’s go-to electronic waste recycling depot and refurbished computer sales centre, promoting a healthy community and environment.

“The best thing about PACE is the workers. These are people who have not only overcome multiple obstacles but are using their lived experiences to make this community a better place,” said Stacey Rexin, operations manager at PACE.

Before PACE there was “Rainbow Waves,” a drop-in program for persons with disabilities open from the mid 90s until 2013, with job coaches and mental health support classes for people experiencing significant barriers to employment.

The first initiatives included a wood shop and art space where creations were made to sell at the farmer’s market. This meant an income increase that immediately improved the quality of participants’ life experience. There was also a leather works service for the public to access and a used furniture store that blazed the trail from funded programs to a social enterprise.

Later a computer repair business was started. This meant steady paid work for people who would otherwise not have access to independent employment opportunities due to social stigma about barriers. This capacity-building trend evolved into the first service contracts that offered access to odd jobs like cleaning and yard work under the name “Yards R Us” that secured the first service contract with the RDOS sorting yard waste at the landfill.

More service contracts were secured with the RDOS for recycling programs. As the business grew, it became quickly evident that additional space was needed and PACE expanded to the current location where you now see the bright green signs downtown at 105 Martin St. (Entrance is on Eastbrook Ave.).

If your small business would like to be part of PACE’s free e-waste pickup email staceyrpace@gmail.com to book a pick-up.

READ MORE: Penticton Vees adapt to border closure and impact to games

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


 

@PentictonNews
newstips@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.