Olive Branch Community Association – Winnipeg, MB
Olive Branch Community Association fonds
Dates of Creation
20 cm of textual records
Olive Branch Community Association was established in 1983. A group of people in a Sunday School class of the Fort Garry Mennonite Brethren Church provided the seed vision for a community art and gift shop with a difference. By its opening in September 1983, no fewer than ten families from several congregations were involved. The store’s aim was to provide direct, immediate help to underprivileged cottage-industry producers of gifts in the West Bank, Kenya, the Philippines, Bangladesh, India, Laos, Thailand, and Taiwan.
The Olive Branch Community Association members were expected to volunteer at the store and provide funding for its operation out of their own pockets. A loan was secured from MCC (Mennonite Central Committee) for a location and many of the products were bought from producers under the MCC umbrella. The store was originally located in the former Hamilton house at 185 Henderson Highway in Winnipeg. In the first year, the gift shop had $100,000 dollars in sales, according to an article in the Winnipeg Free Press, November 13, 1984.
In 1988, Olive Branch teamed up with another non-profit organization, Habitat for Humanity. Olive Branch committed itself to raising funds for one house out of the 18–20 projected by Habitat. Habitat for Humanity’s goal is to build simple, quality housing in partnership with the working poor.
In 1997, the operation of the Olive Branch Gift Store was transferred to Ten Thousand Villages Manitoba.
In 2002, the Olive Branch Community Association was dissolved.
Scope and Content
The materials in this collection deal with the beginnings of Olive Branch and its first years in business. The records include committee minutes, financial reports, and correspondence of the committee which operated and staffed the store.
Ken Reddig was one of the members of the Olive Branch project. He collected the material and then deposited it at the Centre. In 2006, and later in 2021, Wally Kroeker deposited more material with the Centre, files which he had accumulated during his years at the Olive Branch. In 2021, Don Peters deposited his collection with the Center, which were integrated into the existing collection.
- Volume 853–854.
- Accession nos.: 2006-02; 2021-03.
- Described by Conrad Stoesz, October 8, 1999; updated by Tamara Dyck, May 15, 2009; and updated by Jon Isaak, January 2021.
- Olive Branch incorporation documents. -- 1983, 1992.
- Olive Branch meeting minutes and related documents. -- 1983.
- Olive Branch meeting minutes and related documents. -- 1984.
- Olive Branch meeting minutes and related documents. -- 1985.
- Olive Branch meeting minutes and related documents. -- 1986.
- Elmwood Resident Assistance Committee; grant application, correspondence, James Klassen report. -- 1986–1988.
- Olive Branch meeting minutes and related documents. -- 1987.
- Olive Branch meeting minutes and related documents. -- 1988–1989.
- Olive Branch meeting minutes and related documents. -- 1990–1994.
- Olive Branch meeting minutes and related documents. -- 1995–1996.
- Olive Branch financial statements. -- 1985–1995.
- Olive Branch meeting minutes and related documents. -- 1997–1998.
- Dissolution of the Olive Branch Community Association and related documents. -- 2001–2002.
- Documents related to the Hamilton family, the Hamilton House at 185 Henderson Hwy., and renovations to house the Olive Branch Community Association. -- 1983–1986.
- Olive Branch retreat planning, including Carson Show. -- 1985–1986.
- Olive Branch Newsletter (Vol. 1, no. 1; no. 2; and no. 3). -- 1994–1995.
- Miscellaneous documents and correspondence related to the Olive Branch. -- 1985–1997.
- Miscellaneous documents and correspondence related to the Olive Branch, including sale of 185 Henderson Highway. -- 1998.
- Newspaper clippings featuring the Olive Branch Community Association. -- 1984, 1988.
- Don Peters's review of the Olive Branch's 19 years of operation (1983–2002), with highlights from each year. -- 2021.
- Photo album containing photos (and slides) spanning the Olive Branch years--the renovation of Hamilton House, the arts and gifts for sale, the association member families, the retreats, anniversaries, and conclusion of the project. -- 1983–1998.