On April 11, 2018, the fifth annual Cover Me Urban took over Maison Mercer for an electric night celebrating urban culture to raise critical funds for Youth Without Shelter (YWS), an Etobicoke shelter and support house serving more than 1,000 homeless youth every year.
Hosted by TSN’s Cabral “Cabbie” Richards, the street-inspired event celebrated the sights, sounds, and flavours of our city as Toronto’s diverse neighbourhoods came to life under one roof.
Through an evening of incredible food (at pop-ups by 15 local hotspots), drinks, live music and entertainment experiences, the event aimed to raise over $100,000 to support the Life Skills, Employment, Housing and After-Care programs at YWS. Cover Me Urban tremendously surpassed their goal by raising a grand total of $141,425!
Highlights of the night included:
- 15 pop-up food & drink stations by local hotspots such as Scaddabush, The Rec Room & Mill Street Brewery
- Thistletown Collegiate culinary students dishing up hundreds of fish tacos in a heartwarming youth-supporting-youth initiative
- Hannah, a former YWS resident, sharing a heartfelt speech about her time at YWS
- An experience-driven silent auction including a one-week getaway to the beautiful Niagara escarpment and a Cineplex VIP movie experience for 20 people, and round-trip Air Canada flights.
- A surprise Lion Dance by Innovative Entertainment & Productions Inc.
- Carnival games, caricature artists, henna art and all the ice cream guests could eat!
Youth Without Shelter (YWS) is the singular emergency residence and referral agency in Etobicoke serving and supporting homeless youth ages 16-24 for three decades. Life circumstances have not been kind to the youth in these programs — they are victims of abuse, abandonment or have no family at all. YWS not only provides safety and security for youth, but has evolved to provide a full circle of care for more than 1,000 youth annually including counselling, effective life skills programs, employment guidance, placement in affordable housing and support for continued education.