Our Past

2009: Helle Kallas Project

Inspired by a friend in need, Paul Latour, organized and completed a single day Radical Community Renovation worth $25K.  This inaugural event was only meant to be a one off.  But it’s astounding success planted a seed in the founder.  “If I can do this—with no money, no experience, and no connections—then I believe there must be a way in which people across the country can do it too.”  Thus, HeroWork was born, and the long road to a national program was started.

2010: Casa Maria (Refugee Housing) Project

In order to determine if the first Radical Renovation was anomaly, another event was designed as a “concept test.”  This event was a weekend renovation of a refugee shelter, valued at over $100K.  This huge success illustrated the grassroots support for the program.  People and companies were keen to be involved.

2013: Mustard Seed Project

Taking HeroWork to the next level, a “proof of concept” event was designed.  The recipient of this 9 day Radical Community Renovation was the Mustard Seed Food Bank and Street Church.  Over 100 companies and 500 volunteers were involved. The project was valued by contractors at nearly $500K, proving the concept of HeroWork without a shadow of a doubt.

2014: Threshold Housing Project

It took 8 months to create HeroWork’s strong business model, which encompasses financial sustainability, volunteer services, construction supply, program distribution, as well as an educational model.  Once completed HeroWork embarked on it’s fourth Radical Renovation—this one for Threshold Housing Society who house youth at risk of homelessness—valued at $350K and completed over three weekends.

Past Program Evolution and Growth

Our Future

2015 Projected Growth

We have scheduled two radical renovations in the greater Victoria area during 2015. These events will be used to develop and test important program infrastructure:

  • step by step event manuals for both the Onsite and Renovation teams
  • information and database management system
  • redesign and rebuild our contractor directory
  • internal and external volunteer policy manuals
  • construction supply partnerships with industry specific companies
  • beta version of a new mentoring program for leaders and project coordinators
  • refreshed communications policies and social media workflow
  • partnerships with construction, business, and service associations

2016 Projected Growth

We intend to schedule one Radical Renovation in the greater Victoria area, one more on south Vancouver Island, and a third on the lower mainland of BC. The aim here is to mitigate risk while fully testing our models in communities that are separate but still within commutable distance from HeroWork’s home base. Each of these events will be used to hone and refine our systems and approach as we prepare for a full pilot test.

2017-2018 Projected Growth

This phase will mark a full pilot test of our model. We will make available our “charitable franchise” and the “HeroWork Academy” models to communities across BC, choosing, mentoring, and guiding the best leaders and projects.

2019 Projected Growth

After two years of regional testing we will launch a national program, making available our “charitable franchise” and “HeroWork Academy” models across the country.

Program Evolution and Growth

Joanie McCorry

          HeroWork is such a gift to the Mustard Seed.  Paul, you are the Pied Piper of good, generosity, and making a difference! Thank you for leading all of us in this extreme makeover! I don’t think any of us will ever forget this week…

Joanie McCorry Photographer
Laurie MacKenzie
          The aspect of HeroWork that had the greatest impact on me was the community that was built among the volunteers. This sense of community penetrated everything – every nail, every light socket, every new wall was built with pride of community.
Laurie MacKenzie Onsite Organizer