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Surrey’s ‘Women of Options’ campaign tops $1.5M with push from waterfront companies

Funds raised will help build an affordable-housing complex in Newton
South of the Fraser Maritime Employers group reps present donation of $36,000 to Women of Options campaign organizers. Pictured from left are Marissa Chan-Kent (BCMEA), Kathy deLisser (Ceres Terminals Canada), Christine Mohr (Options Community Services CEO), Kim Stegeman-Lowe (Western Group), Penny Priddy (Women of Options), Jennifer Perih (Global Container Terminals Canada), Angela Kirkham (DP World Fraser Surrey) and Kamaljit Lehal (Options Community Services Chair of the Board). (Submitted photo)

Surrey’s Women of Options fundraising effort has reached its $1.5-million goal, thanks to a late-campaign push from waterfront companies in the area.

The South of the Fraser Maritime Employers group has donated $36,000 to Options Community Services’ project to build an affordable-housing complex now taking shape in Newton, at 81 Avenue and King George Boulevard.

To celebrate the organization’s 50th anniversary, 50 local “Women of Options” were each tasked with raising $25,000 to build and furnish the housing project, starting last February.

The new complex, to be operated by Habitat Housing Society, will cater to women fleeing violence, refugees, seniors, at-risk youth and others facing barriers in finding decent, affordable homes.

Local waterfront companies that donated to the cause include Ceres Terminals Canada, DP World Fraser Surrey, Global Container Terminals Canada, Western Group, and BC Maritime Employers Association.

“Options Community Services is one of the most respected not-for-profit organizations in the South Fraser region,” said Jennifer Perih, of Global Container Terminals, on behalf of the group. “We couldn’t be prouder to answer their call and support their critical work building affordable housing for women, youth and others at risk of homelessness in our communities.”

• RELATED STORY: $50K boost for Surrey’s ‘Women of Options’ campaign to build affordable housing.

Of the 100 units in the new building, 30 will be market rentals, and the remaining 70 will be “well below” market rates, with rent starting as low as $375 per month. The building will also house community services such as Early Years, mental-health outreach and family services.

“What a wonderful way to wrap up our campaign to raise $1.5 million to build affordable homes for Surrey women and others in need of support,” said Christine Mohr, CEO of Options Community Services and Habitat Housing Society, its sister company managing the project.

“Thanks to Penny Priddy, we have forged new relationships within our waterfront industry. Together, we are making a big difference.”

Priddy, among the Women of Options fundraisers and a former board member of Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, reached out to the waterfront companies and helped co-ordinate their donation to the campaign.

Options is planning an “Around the World” anniversary gala for April 8, 2022, at Hazelmere Golf and Tennis Club. For more details visit

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Tom Zillich

About the Author: Tom Zillich

I cover entertainment, sports and news stories for the Surrey Now-Leader, where I've worked for more than half of my 30-plus years in the newspaper business.
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