The House on Sixth Street / by Art Zaratsyan

HOPE International Development Agency (www.hope-international.com) is an international non-profit organization based in New Westminster, BC. According to the website, their mission is "[…] to improve the supply of basic human necessities for the neediest of the needy in the Third World through self-help activities, and to challenge, educate, and involve North Americans regarding development issues."

The organization's projects range from providing the world's poor with clean water and sanitation, helping with development of sustainable agriculture, providing education and literacy programs for children, to emergency and rehabilitation services in zones of disaster and war and reduction of spread of AIDS and HIV. Their last year's financial statements report more than $21 million used on humanitarian projects worldwide.

I visited HOPE offices one rainy August morning to meet its founder David McKenzie and the people who help run the organization. The converted two-level house on Sixth Street that served as its headquarters looked like all the others in the neighbourhood, and I almost passed it by…