T-shirts and totes are back!

New colour, long sleeve shirts, new bag design in time for holiday gifting

Our t-shirt and tote sale is back!
This t shirt and tote design shows the heart of BC, caring for ourselves and extending that to others.  Written in English, Lekwungen, French,  Chinese and Arabic.  We believe the shirt reflects our strong belief in the value and importance of care and compassion for our fellow humans. 

The Gherkins mission is to enable newcomer families to feel wanted and appreciated, to become Canadian, connected with, contributing to, and thriving in the local community; and to live an independent, fulfilling, and comfortable life.  

The sales of these totes and tshirts are a fundraiser for the Gordon Head Refugee Sponsorship Constituency Group (the Gherkins) in Victoria BC.  We are currently supporting a family group of 8 from Syria who began their new lives in Victoria in the Spring.  The kids are in school, the adults are all getting English language instruction and some have entered the workforce. This is great progress towards independent and full lives in Canada.

When Syrian refugees come to Canada they must repay to the Federal Government the cost of their travel to get here.  We believe they will have a better start to a safe and secure life if they do not begin it with a large debt.  To help them, we are fundraising to offset some or all of the $15-$20,000 debt these 8 people will be required to repay.

This striking design has been generously developed and donated to us by Noah Crowder. To see more of Noah’s work please go to his website:

Visit our shopify store here:


Garage Sale success

Thank you to everyone who came to our big garage sale — we raised $2,600 in sales, food sales, and donations.
We are especially thankful to the many who donated items, those who made food, the neighbours who hosted a sale at the same time to boost the event, and everyone who came out to volunteer.
We had a blast, and we think everyone who came by had a great time too!

Fundraising events News

Giant Garage Sale fundraiser Aug 27

Come one, come all to our neighbourhood garage sale supporting the Gordon Head Refugee Sponsorship group.

Saturday Aug 27 from 9 am to noon(ish)

at 1553 and 1557 Granada Crescent … plus 5 other houses on Granada Crescent!

Find us here:

We have kitchen items, books, gadgets, sports items, and so many awesome board games and MORE. PLUS sweet and savory snacks for sale! All proceeds at 1553 and 1557 Granada sale go to refugee sponsorship.

The fundraiser sale is joined by **five additional houses** on Granada Cr who are holding sales at the same time to help us make this a high traffic event!

Check out the photos below… this is just a taste of what we have on sale!

Fundraising events News

Fundraiser: garage sale August 27

The Gordon Head Refugee Sponsorship Constituent Group (“the Gherkins”) are planning a garage sale! We hope to see you at the sale on August 27th (9am to noon) at 1553 and 1557 Granada Crescent for some great bargains. Last time we held a garage sale (2019) we raised $2,000 for refugee sponsorship.

We are ready for another fun day of fantastic deals, treasure hunting, and chatting with neighbours and friends. Not only that… our popular snack sale will also return! Savories and sweets, including some Syrian treats, will be on sale for shoppers to enjoy.

Do you have items you would like to donate to the sale?

Bring us your small appliances, puzzles and games, kitchen items, toys, tchotchkes, and other items. Perhaps they no longer bring you joy. Perhaps one batch of homemade pasta was enough. It is time for them to bring someone else joy (and pasta), and by passing them along you will also support a refugee family settle in our community.

Drop off your donations on August 13, 14, 17, 18, and 19, from 1 – 3 pm, at 1557 Granada Crescent (Eulala’s place) 

We will donate unsold items to charity.


The family has arrived

The Gordon Head Refugee Sponsorship Group is thrilled to announce that our sponsored families have arrived and moved into their new homes.

In late February we received word we should prepare for arrival and in March we received news the families would be flying to Canada in April. This sparked a flurry of preparations for their arrival. Like anyone moving to Victoria, finding housing was our biggest challenge. But we are happy to say that after some stops and starts, the families are settled into their homes. The children had their first taste of school and everyone is starting to learn English.

We had many donations of furniture and kitchen wares from our community of supporters, and were able to provide all the needed furnishings, as well as bicycles for the kids, school supplies, and a laptop for each family.

We are especially grateful for the very generous donation of free dental services from Dr. Prevost, Megson Fitzpatrick for providing two years’ tenant insurance, gardening supplies from Gardenworks, as well as a donation from Megan’s Hairstyling. Science Venture not only donated summer camp spots for each of the four children, their staff made a special effort to welcome and include their participation as they navigated a new town, new games, new friends in an unfamiliar language.

Fundraising events News

Fundraiser turns spring cleaning into cash

Garbage may not be the most glamorous topic, but on April 22-24, the Gherkins turned trash into treasure with our Spring Fling in the Bin fundraiser.

Supporters were invited to purchase tickets for each garbage bag (or equivalent sized item) they deposited in our big bin. We sold out 170 tickets and raised $1600. (As a bonus several of us were inspired to do our spring cleaning!)

This fundraiser was made more successful due to our supportive bin supplier… so a big shout out to Bin There Done That Victoria! Not only did they waive fees, they delivered the bin and advised us on how to manage the event for success.

Fundraising events News

Be Kind, Be Calm, Be Safe… in 5 languages

Join the Gherkins in learning to say Be Kind, Be Calm, Be Safe in English, Lekwungen, Chinese, French, and Arabic!

100% of proceeds from this fundraiser go to our next sponsorship our three related refugee families from Syria/

Don’t forget to support the fundraiser: buy a shirt or tote!


Thanks Victoria and Joni for your work editing this beautiful video!

Shout out to the translators who made sure the tshirts are correct: Joe Seward (Lekwungen), Marie Chemel-Lefebvre (French), Montaser Aljundy (Arabic), Rachel Yuen and Linda Yang (Chinese).

T-shirt design 100% donated by the lovely and talented Noah Crowder Designs

Tshirts are locally printed in Victoria with printing and promotional materials generously supported by MegaScreen productions and Island Blue Print

Shirt sizing details are found here.

Fundraising events News

T-shirt fundraiser for refugee sponsorship

Be Kind, Be Calm, Be Safe – our BC motto for 2020 and beyond. 

The Gherkins are selling t shirts and totes to raise funds for our next refugee sponsorship.

Gherkin volunteers (l-r) Joni, Pam, Monika & Katharine in our awesome multilingual shirts!

The t-shirt features Dr. Henry’s “Be Kind, Be Calm, Be Safe” motto in English, Lekwungen, French,  Chinese and Arabic.  We believe Dr. Henry’s motto reflects a strong belief in the value and importance of care and compassion for our fellow humans. 


Volunteers made this project possible

This striking design has been generously developed and donated to us by Noah Crowder, a student in the Pacific Design Academy in Victoria. To see more of Noah’s work please go to his website:

We also would like to offer thanks to the volunteers who ensured our translations were accurate:  Joe Seward (Lekwungen), Marie Chemel-Lefebvre (French), Montaser Aljundy (Arabic), Rachel Yuen and Linda Yang (Chinese).

Price, fabric, sizes
We print on demand so offer a range of size options from toddler to 3XL. Shirt size details are here.

Regular shirts are $25.

For $35 you can have an eco-friendly shirt of 100% North American cotton, ethically grown, and then woven, cut and produced all in Canada.

Totes are $20 and are made of heavy (12 oz) cotton canvas.

Printing is done locally–thanks MegaScreen for the discount to support us!

Promotional cards printed with a generous discount from Island Blue Print.

Delivery and pick up options

Shirts must be pre-ordered and can be picked up when ready at our “pick up days”, or you can chose to pay a bit extra to have a volunteer drop it at your Greater Victoria home. Outside Victoria? Watch this space or contact through the order site.


Spread the word

Please tell your friends and share!

Fundraising events News

Syrian dinner success

Thank you everyone who attended, donated, cooked, and volunteered for the October 2019 Syrian Dinner fundraiser.

The following businesses and individuals generously donated items for auction or raffle:

Adanac Limousine, Catherine Ellis, Chateau Victoria Hotel, Cinecenta, David Steeves, Dan and Florie Varga, Elke Schlufter, Eulala , Paul and Rachel, Everything WineFernwood Coffee, Finest at Sea , Fired Up! , Il Covo Trattoria, Island Reveries beeswax wraps, Gordon Head favourite for brunch JJ Morgan Restaurant, Joni Mitchell, Josie Bissonette, Kenda Haga, Kiki Shuffle Victoria, Maria’s Deli & European Imports, Matthew Steeves, Mimi & Marge jewelry, Moka House, Pierre Pomerleau, Stacy Chappel, Susan Hart, The Root Cellar, The Rostad Family, Wildfire Bakery, Yvonne Kemeny.

Thank you once again to Freeman Audio Visual for their donation of sound equipment!

A special thank you to the Holy Cross Parish who donated $5,000 to our sponsorship at the event, and whose parishioners filled several tables at the event! In addition to this generous donation, the event raised $6500.

With this deposit of 11,500 we are now half way to our fundraising goal for our next sponsorship!

Fundraising events News

Syrian Dinner Fundraiser October 25

Gordon Head Refugee Sponsorship Constituent Group AKA The Gherkins Present: 

A Traditional Syrian Dinner Fundraiser for Syrian Refugees Traveling to and Settling in Victoria

 Friday October 25, 6:30-9:30 PM

Christ Church Cathedral School 

912 Vancouver St – Entrance at the Back of the School

NOTE: Get your tickets in advance. This event has sold out every time!


Come and enjoy:

  • Amazing food (lots of vegetarian options) prepared by the local Syrian community
  • A Silent Auction including: wine, chocolate, movie tickets, Hotel stays
  • Music, and much much more….

Just to remind you how wonderful this meal is… here’s some photos from last time:



$35 per person for the food and entertainment, Wine, juice and pop available for purchase at the event.

Tickets on sale September 30, 2019 online at