Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, SOS is only able to offer essential services. We are fundraising to begin to restart other priority programs, including Child, Youth and Family programs. Current programs include: Meals on Wheels, Emergency Assistance & Advocacy, Seniors Advocacy, Counselling Referral, Seniors Grocery Shopping and Friendly Phone Visiting (through Oceanside Better at Home and BC211), Homeless Prevention Program,  Income Tax program, and Recreation Assistance for Children and Youth. 

SOS Thrift Shop is open as of June 15, 2020 with limited hours and new procedures to keep you safe. Please visit the Thrift Shop page for more information.

The SOS Community Services Centre in Parksville is open Monday - Friday, 8:30 am - 4:30 pm. The Qualicum Commons location remains closed. If possible, please call before coming to the Parksville Centre. 

Volunteer activities are suspended with the exception of a few areas, and we are not able to recruit, screen or take on new volunteers at this time. For more information or for assistance, call 250-248-2093.

Monetary donations are critical at this time to keep our services available. If you are able, please consider donating. We wish you good health and hope to reconnect again soon.

Caring for Community at Christmas

Posted in Adult & Seniors Programs, Children's & Family Programs

One Community Sharing Christmas

Caring for Community at Christmas

The SOS Caring for Community at Christmas Program ensures our local children and youth have a magical Christmas, and that adults and seniors also experience some joy and dignity over the holidays.

With your help, we can ensure that when our local children and youth wake up on Christmas morning their faces will light up, because there will be a gift waiting for them under the tree. SOS collects enough new toys to fill its free Toy Shop where low income parents and caregivers can shop for free. With your help, all of our adults and seniors can choose their own food items to enjoy over the holidays. Together we’re ensuring they have a good meal to share. Together we’re helping create magic.

People can bring in monetary donations or new, unwrapped gifts to the SOS, year-round Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monetary donations help purchase grocery store gift cards for the families, individuals and seniors.

During the 2017 Christmas campaign, SOS assisted 1,146 adults and 1,248 children received gifts.

The SOS Toy Shop is often short on gifts for teens.Please click here for a list of ideas for teens and pre-teens.

Angel Trees

Starting up again in November, 2018, the Angel Tree program will be helping stock the SOS Toy Shop. Visit a local participating business in November and December and you’ll discover an SOS Angel Tree. The gifts listed on these Angels have been identified as “that one special gift” that a child or youth is hoping for. Purchase the gift listed on one of the Angel ornaments (or as close to it as possible), attach the Angel to your unwrapped gift and return it to the business location to ensure it is included in the gift distribution.*Check back here in November 2018 for a list of participating Angel Tree Businesses.

To Donate

Click on this link to make a donation with your credit card, or drop by either SOS location (245 West Hirst Avenue in Parksville or 744 Primrose St, Qualicum Beach) between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. New, unwrapped gifts are also gratefully accepted.


Registration to the SOS Christmas Program begins on November 14, 2018 and runs to early December. Adults must register in person at the SOS Community Services Centre in Parksville at 245 West Hirst Ave, between the hours of 9:30 am and 3:30 pm. Evening Registrations (5-7 pm) are available by appointment to individuals who work during the day. SOS will also accommodate working families for evening distribution through the Toy Shop.

Alternatively adults can register at the SOS Community Services Centre in Qualicum Beach at 744 Primrose St. on Wednesdays, Nov. 14, Nov. 21, Nov. 28 and Dec. 5, 2018 from 2 to 4 pm.

Registration will also take place in Qualicum Bay at the Lighthouse Community Centre at 240 Lions Way on Thursdays, Oct. 25, Nov. 29 and Dec. 13, 2018 from 10 am to 1 pm.
Please remember to bring:

(Click for examples)

Grocery Store Gift Card and Toy Distribution will take place in December at the SOS Community Services Centre in Parksville.


Would you like to volunteer for the Christmas program? There are a number of ways you can help, from  sorting toys, decorating, stocking the Toy Shop, taking registration, Christmas baking and more. The deadline to apply to be a Christmas volunteer in 2018 is in October. Please call 250-248-2093 ext. 230.

Community Events benefitting the program
  • Nov. 17, 2018, 12 pm - 1 pm: Equestrian Christmas Toy Ride. The Silver Spur Riding Club Hosts this event annually. Riders and their horses don Christmas attire and make their way from Ballenas Secondary School to SOS, collecting gifts along the way.
  • Nov. 28, 2018, 6:30 am - 10 am: Tigh-Na-Mara Toy Drive. This is the 10th Annual event. Brings a new, unwrapped toy or monetary donation and receive a free breakfast buffet. 
  • Dec. 9, 2018, 11 am - 4 pm: Community Food and Toy Fill Up at Save On Foods. Organized by On Line Electric Co. Ltd. and Robyn Gervais-Royal Lepage. Drop off new toys, gifts, monetary donations and non-perishable food. Benefitting SOS and the Salvation Army.
  • Dec. 15, 2018, 2- 3:30 pm. Todd Sjogren and Tony MacAulay Community Toy Drive & Free Skate at Oceanside Place Arena. Bring a new, unwrapped gift or monetary donation, and enjoy a free skate.

Please call 250-248-2093 ext. 229 to register for this program located at 245 West Hirst Ave, Parksville.

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Positive Reviews:

  • Thank you for arranging a drive for my medical appointment... I really appreciate your cheerfulness...

    ~ a safely transported client

  • Not since the banquets of Nero... has such a meal been served on golden plates!

    ~ a delighted diner

  • The program was most helpful, empowering, and valuable.

    ~ a self-help participant

  • I have become more dignified and stable.

    ~ a community member enriched

  • This is the best day of my whole life.

    ~ a child's first picnic

  • Besides the hardship assistance, subsidized children's programming and vouchers... you have given us the greatest gift... respect, compassion, and dignity.

    ~ a family helped