On Tuesday July 11, Horizon Housing brought the traditional Calgarian western spirit to residents at its 9th Annual Tenant Stampede BBQ. The Calgary Stampede can be an expensive celebration for Calgarians living below the poverty line, or seniors with limited income. There are also invisible barriers to those experiencing mental health challenges, brain injuries, or limited mobility. But, with the help of over 30 community supporters, Horizon Housing broke down those barriers by bringing the Stampede party directly to its residents.
Over 250 tenants, staff, volunteers, sponsors, and government officials gathered at Heritage Gardens for a day that celebrates inclusivity, community, and western hospitality. The Honourable Kent Hehr and Honourable Brandy Payne spoke to the importance of affordable housing and stayed to enjoy the Stampede festivities along with several other government representatives. The day was filled with entertainment, and activities including live dance and music performances, face painting, a White Hat Ceremony, and cotton candy!
Valenta Kapay, a resident from Horizon Housing’s Alice Bissett Place had an especially great time with her kids, and she believes that the event is much more than just a party. “This event is my family’s favourite, we got to enjoy a day of fun, food, and entertainment, perfect for my kids. But most importantly, by putting on this event Horizon Housing was able to bring all of its tenants together, making us feel loved and like we are part of the community.”
“When we can come together to make sure everyone is included in celebrations like the Calgary Stampede, it’s a very special thing,” says Hon. Kent Hehr, Member of Parliament for Calgary Centre. “We send an important message that everyone is welcome and everyone matters – and enshrine the cause that we can all come together to play, share, and care for one another.”
Thank you to those who came out in support of our event, and more importantly, in support of our goal to create inclusive, welcoming communities for everyone. A special thanks to presenting sponsor, SECURE Energy Services Ltd. along with Moxie’s for donating all of the delicious food. This event truly embodied the meaning of the Calgary Stampede: a fun, community party brought to you by the people for the people. We look forward to seeing you again next year!