to better HELP
A message from the President
“Some magnificent milestones were reached during this past year. Since 1994 Renaissance has helped more than 4,000 people to find work and also surpassed the enviable level of one million donors! We are very proud of this success at Renaissance which is due to the generosity of all the people who support us and to the strength of the foundation of our organization.
2018-2019 also brought its share of challenges. The expansion and opening of six stores during the past two years created pressure on supply. To respond adequately we needed to open six new donation centers in the past year alone. In addition, a chance arose to form a partnership with other non-profit organizations and we established business relationships with them. Purchasing merchandise from these nonprofits allowed us to offer our clients a greater selection and help finance our job training missions while supporting these local initiatives serving their own clientele.
This new partnership experience was very positive for all parties involved and we are motivated to explore similar collaborative projects with other organizations. The precious relationships allow Renaissance and its new partners to have a wider and more effective impact and to respond to the objectives of other social enterprises and those of Renaissance.
Mr. Pierre Legault, the founder of Renaissance, officially left his position as CEO after having prepared an exceptional successor – Mr. Éric St-Arnaud. Mr. Legault is still involved in the administration as an advisor and responsible for special projects. We want to offer our heartfelt thanks for the exceptional work he accomplished during these twenty-four years. We are proud and privileged to have such a highly qualified successor as Éric and we support him wholeheartedly.
Thank you to all the people and organizations who carry Renaissance: donors, clients, employees, participants, volunteers, partners, and members of the Board of Directors. Thanks to them, our organization grows stronger year after year. It is thus able to help more and to dream of new horizons. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you!”
A message from the new CEO
“It is truly an honor to take the reins of an organization like Renaissance. With its inherent values and the quality of its people, with its originality and unique character, it has made its mark on the landscape of Quebec’s economy.
Before embarking on further development of the organization, we felt the need to bolster our foundations, both our infrastructure and our human resources. Leasehold improvements on certain buildings were necessary to ensure better working conditions for our employees and a more stimulating training environment for the participants. We also aimed to improve the client experience within the store as well as the donor experience at the Donation Centres. Every effort was made to ensure that the work being done did not have a negative impact on the services which we offer the population.
This consolidation also included a plan for employee development: a third cohort followed a leadership training course; our francization course has also distinguished itself. Several new positions were created and were filled internally allowing employees the possibility to progress within the organization.
Our goal now is to expand Renaissance beyond the Greater Montreal area. To do that, we are convinced that our approach must be inclusive and complementary with existing projects. Because Renaissance hopes to play an important role in social economy and the environment in Quebec, we must develop collaborative relationships with other local organizations and municipal partners. Our participation at various round table discussions is an example which reflects our desire to create and be involved in a network which could change even more lives while decreasing the environmental footprint in Quebec by the recovery of reusable goods.
This new stage would never have been possible without the work already accomplished by Pierre Legault, the man who started Renaissance. I want to thank him again for his vision, his commitment, and his determination to offer Quebecers a social enterprise which tackles the current social issues of employment, the environment, and conscientious buying power. We continue today with the logical progression of the organization, certainly on a different scale but deeply rooted in the same values.”
Renaissance in Numbers
25 years of presence in Quebec
15 Fripe-Prix stores
9 bookstore-donation centres
23 donation centres
1 specialized boutique-donation centre
1 liquidation centre
1 distribution centre
Be committed to helping others develop their autonomy and accompany them in their personal and professional pathways. Work as a team and help each other reach new heights. Be united with one another towards a common humanitarian mission.
Accept people with their diversity and demonstrate tolerance regarding differences. Recover reusable goods and preserve the environment. Realize that the clothing and other generously donated items have the power to change lives. Be respectful and feel respected to evolve in a healthy work environment.
Legitimize the work performed and realize its positive impact on both people and the environment. Compensate everyone for their efforts. Listen to everyone, consider their ideas and initiatives. Invest in each person by recognizing their abilities and through training.
Be devoted and honest with everyone and the organization. Be committed to the humanitarian mission of Renaissance. Act appropriately towards everyone. Demonstrate sincerity in one’s actions.
Be a source of inspiration to change lives and realize that this power is within each of us. Develop a strong team spirit and move mountains. Create a work environment which favors development so that each person is fulfilled.
Be an innovative organization turned towards the future. Try, step back if necessary, undertake, invent, transform to create a unique organization. Develop by adapting to change and to new technologies. Demonstrate creativity.
The Board of Directors
The Board of Director is comprised of volunteer members from the community and the CEO of the organization who is a non-voting member. The Board whose members have varied and complementary skills, manages the business side of the organization and exercises the powers established by the law. The Directors are all volunteers and met five times this year.
Mr. Yvon Arseneault – President
Mrs. Janine Desrosiers-Choquette – Vice President
Mr. Yves Prévost – Secretary – Prévost Notaires
Mrs Chantal Clouâtre – Treasurer – LSR GesDev
Mr. Daniel Binette – Director – BFL Canada
Mrs. Sheila Murphy – Director
Mr. Paul-André Lazure – Director – Stamina Agence Immobilière
Mr. Louis Fortier – Director – i4B inc.
Mr. Pierre Legault – Director – Renaissance
Mr. Eric St-Arnaud – CEO – Ex-officio member
“Before beginning my training at the St-Laurent store, I was working in animation and in restaurants. I was going to CEGEP but I wasn’t able to continue in the area I was most interested in: business management. When a friend spoke to me about the job training at Renaissance, I felt it was a good opportunity to work in an environment which I like.”
Upon his arrival at the St-Laurent store, Kenny was delighted to be able to visit the different work stations with his counsellor. As the weeks passed, he progressed in retail commerce and discovered the various training options offered by Renaissance, but what fascinated him the most was meeting so many people of so many different nationalities. “The best advice I got was to always welcome the client properly. That way, the client will be alright with me.”
Even though he is still in training, Kenny is very confident that he will be able to find work in the retail trade afterwards.
“It is a good opportunity to work in an environment which I like.”
Present in Quebec for 25 years, Renaissance is a non-profit organization whose mission is to facilitate the social and professional reintegration of people experiencing difficulty entering the workforce while eliciting a commitment from the community to protect the environment.
Items are recovered, people are reintegrated and thus the donations are reinvested in the community. This triple bottom line gives meaning to the work of the organization and makes Renaissance a model of sustainable development.
The Success of Integration
for years 2018/2019
4,000 Lives Changed, What a Difference!
Each life changed is a success story which inspires all the teams at Renaissance to continue their work. It also makes a big difference in the daily lives of people searching for their autonomy, self-confidence, and dignity.
This year we celebrated the job placement of the 4,000th participant. Striving every day to make a more inclusive society and a more social economy for the future is what gives meaning and purpose to the work that each and every one does at Renaissance.
Bravo to the people who decided to take their destiny in hand and who trusted us to rise to the challenge to change their lives!
Profile of the Participants
of the people were excluded from the job market because :
have self-esteem issues
have financial difficulties
have social and family problems
are adapting to the culture of their new country
The Renaissance Employment Resource Centres
Arriving from Chile in 2017, Guerlande had more than five years experience working in restaurants. Adapting to the job market in Quebec was quite complicated for this woman of Haitian origin. Her CV was inadequate, she did not have transferable experience and she did not know where to look for help.
She took a chance and applied for a job at Fripe-Prix in Montreal North but they suggested that she go to the Employment Resource Centre in the store on St-Laurent. There she met Lucie, an employment counsellor who would change her life!
“After just a few meetings, I learned a lot about looking for work in Quebec, notably how to prepare for interviews and how to present myself. Shortly after, I found a job as a caretaker for the elderly which enabled me to work many hours in a week.”
Then, in 2018, it was another employment counsellor, Nathalie, who helped her to take the necessary steps so that she could progress in the same position and find a part time job in another company. Within a year, the Employment Services at Renaissance helped her to restore her self-confidence and to foresee a brighter future.
“After just a few meetings, I learned a lot about looking for work in Quebec”
Certification Adds Value to the Training Program
In partnership with the Commission Scolaire Marguerite-Bourgeoys, eleven of the fifteen Fripe-Prix Renaissance stores as well as the Distribution Centre offer training certificates in a specialized trade for the positions of sorter-ticketer, janitorial assistant, and stock-handler. This certification is particularly helpful for people who were educated outside Quebec as they can obtain a diploma which is recognized here. This is a real advantage for people who are hoping to return to the workforce or go back to school!
A few months ago, Thanea was working for a company that packaged clothing. She wanted to change jobs but always had problems with her attempts. Though she had been in Quebec for ten years, she didn’t know who to turn to for help. A counsellor presented several options including the job training program at Renaissance which really interested her.
Last November, Thanea began the job training at the St-Laurent store and immediately felt very reassured by the warm welcome she received. “From the first meeting with my counsellor, I understood that she was attentive and helpful. She gave me a lot of confidence as well as good advice on how to get the most from the training.”
Within a few weeks, Thanea had already integrated well with the employees and was also able to improve her French. “I liked the team work and getting to know people. I could always count on the support of the team to help me when I had trouble.”
With just a few days left till the end of her training, Thanea has already found a job as a seamstress and a clothing sales clerk. “I like it a lot because I had a similar job in Mexico for two years.”
“My counsellor gave me a lot of good advice on how to get the most from my training.”
A new record was set this year! In fact, for the first time in the history of the organization, we celebrated our one millionth donor in the same year!
This confirms our hopes that Renaissance has truly been accepted by Quebecers who are proud to support our mission of socio-professional reintegration.
An increase of 27,24% of donations collected compared to last year.
35 161 000 lb
of clothing and other household goods diverted from landfill sites.
that’s 17,580 tons! (more than 100 blue whales )
Our Donation Campaigns
Our stores are expanding
This year many of our stores got “facelifts”! They are larger, more welcoming, enhance the shopping experience for our clients, and provide a better work environment for our staff.
1330 Mont-Royal Ave East
Reopening: June 21, 2018
Area: 9,320 sq ft
5 job training positions
6700 Côte-des-Neiges Road
Reopening: September 27, 2018
Area: 26,140 sq ft
12 job training positions
3238 Masson Street
Reopening: January 28, 2019
Area: 10,000 sq ft (plus 10,000sqft to come)
12 job training positions
A New Bookstore
We also inaugurated a new bookstore in the Hochelaga-Maisonneuve borough. Since it is located a few steps from the Fripe-Prix Pie IX store, the residents of the area now have access to more variety as well as another drop off point where they can donate items which they no longer need.
3920 Ontario Street East
Opening: February 25, 2019
Area 2,500 sq ft
There is a New Donation Centre
In order to offer people of the metropolitan area more opportunities to donate their used items in a responsible manner, five new Donation Centres were opened.
Our Francization Courses
Our employees each have their stories, their skills and their qualities. In order to help our non-francophone employees to offer the best possible customer service, Renaissance is now offering francization classes in the workplace.
Renaissance was awarded the “Trophée perseverance d’or” given by the Centre d’Intégration Multi-Services de l’Ouest-de-l’Île
Vinoth was a part time cook’s helper and sought help to find a full-time job. The youth employment centre in Centre Nord referred him to the francization program offered by the Collectif des entreprises d’insertion du Québec. He was able to choose among several organizations which offer job training while also following French courses. Vinoth chose Renaissance specifically to be trained as a cashier.
The first contact was very positive. “Right away, I felt very reassured. During our meeting, the counsellor took the time to listen to me and to answer all my questions.” He quickly integrated into the activities of the store “I quickly learned how to use the cash register, then to ticket the clothes and place them in the store. The whole team encouraged me and gave me really good advice which built my confidence. I really progressed with my mastery of French.”
After this training, Vinoth found several opportunities for full-time work. “I went back to work in the restaurant for the summer where I did full-time replacement work. Now, I would like to continue with French courses or computer training. But if I can find another job which suits me, that would be ideal. I’ve already had a lot of calls and I feel prepared.”
“I really progressed with my mastery of French”
A Career Which Does Good!
Since last February, our “Careers” section was also upgraded. There you’ll find all the necessary information to find a job near you and discover the reasons which make Renaissance an employer of choice.
Whether you are a professional in retail sales, transportation, or simply looking for a job which reflects your values, we have the job to suit you!
All Our Addresses
If you are looking for an eco-responsible place to drop off your clothing and household items which you no longer use, there is a Donation Centre near you.
Shopping at Renaissance is a must if you are looking for incredible bargains! With the different concepts of Renaissance stores you are bound to find something you’ll like and at a great low price!
THANK YOU TO OUR PRECIOUS PARTNERS
Renaissance would like to thank all its partners and benefactors for their support, their commitment and their confidence. Without their partnership from the onset, Renaissance would definitively not have been able to become the organization that it is today.
Here is a list of many of them:
- Accueil Bonneau
- Aéroport Montréal-Trudeau
- Arrondissement d’Ahuntsic-Cartierville
- Arrondissement d’Outremont
- Arrondissement de Côte-des-Neiges–Notre-Dame-de-Grâce
- Arrondissement de L’Île-Bizard–Sainte-Geneviève
- Arrondissement de LaSalle
- Arrondissement de Mercier–Hochelaga-Maisonneuve
- Arrondissement de Montréal-Nord
- Arrondissement de Pierrefonds-Roxboro
- Arrondissement de Rivière-des-Prairies–Pointe-aux-Trembles
- Arrondissement de Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie
- Arrondissement de Saint-Laurent
- Arrondissement de Saint-Léonard
- Arrondissement de Verdun
- Arrondissement de Villeray–Saint-Michel–Parc-Extension
- Arrondissement du Plateau-Mont-Royal
- Banque Nationale du Canada
- Banque Royale du Canada
- BFL Canada
- Caisse d’économie solidaire Desjardins
- CARI St-Laurent
- Carrefour Familial L’Intermed (CFI)
- Cégep Marie-Victorin
- Centre communautaire de Châteauguay
- Centre d’action bénévole Soulanges
- Centre de loisirs communautaires Lajeunesse
- Centre de réadaptation Lisette-Dupras
- Centre François-Michelle
- Centre Jeunesse Laval
- Chantier de l’économie sociale
- Circonscription de Laurier-Dorion
- Circonscription de Papineau
- Cité de Dorval
- Collectif des entreprises d’insertion du Québec
- Collège Édouard-Montpetit
- Commerce solidaire
- Commission scolaire de Laval
- Commission scolaire Marguerite-Bourgeoys
- Complexe Desjardins
- Complexe Partage
- Comptoir familial des filles d’Isabelle
- Conseil d’économie sociale de l’île de Montréal (CESIM)
- CRDI Gabrielle-Major
- De Grandpré Chait s.e.n.c.r.l.
- École aux adultes de VERDUN
- École de la Lancée
- École Face
- École Irénée-Lussier
- École le Tournesol
- Entraide Verchères
- Équation Groupe Conseil
- Fondation ARPAC
- Fondation de la famille J.W. McConnell
- Fondation du Dr Julien
- Fondation J.A. DeSève
- Fondation Lucie et André Chagnon
- Goodwill Industries International
- Grenier populaire
- Groupe Daoust/Forget
- Groupe Trium
- Investissement Québec
- John Abbott College
- La Foire du livre de l’Université McGill
- Le Centre de réadaptation de l’Ouest de Montréal
- Le Chaînon
- Le CRDITED de Montréal
- Les Amis de la Bibliothèque de Montréal
- Les Bio Locaux
- Les Établissements verts Brundtland
- Les Fées Marraines
- Les Investigations J. Pesant
- Livr’À Venir
- Location d’outils Simplex
- Ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur
- Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Diversité et de l’Inclusion
- Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques
- Ministère du Travail, de l’Emploi et de la Solidarité sociale
- Moisson Montréal
- Partage Saint-François-de-Sales
- Prévost Notaires
- Procam Construction
- Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton
- Regroupement des éco-quartiers
- Réseau CFER
- Réseau d’investissement social du Québec
- Résidence Les Jardins Millen
- Résidences evo
- Résidences McGill
- Social Capital Partners
- Sourire sans fin
- TechSoup Canada
- Université Concordia
- Ville de Beaconsfield
- Ville de Blainville
- Ville de Brossard
- Ville de Laval
- Ville de L’Île-Perrot
- Ville de Longueuil
- Ville de Montréal
- Ville de Mont-Royal
- Ville de Sainte-Julie
- Ville de Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu
- Ville de Saint-Lambert