“The very best store in Squamish with lots of friendly staff and volunteers.”
- Marie M.
Pearl’s Value & Vintage is a non-profit social enterprise of the Howe Sound Women’s Centre Society (HSWC). This means 100% of proceeds go to supporting the HSWC’s programs and services within the unceded traditional territory of the Skwxwú7mesh, Lilwat7úl First and Lower Stl’atl’imx Nations. Not only do your donations and dollars spent directly benefit survivors of gender-based violence and their children in the Sea to Sky region, but our social purpose store in turn benefits our communities in many wonderful ways.
These include providing no-cost essentials to people in need via the HSWC and other local non-profits, offering volunteer and work experience in store, and providing easy ways to reduce our collective environmental impact.
Our inviting, inclusive community store provides a safe, accessible space for all walks of life to come together to support a great cause while fostering community spirit, promoting equality and empowerment in action and encouraging sustainable living!
Our Social Purpose
Pearl’s Value and Vintage is THE community store in the Sea to Sky Corridor. We aim to create a space where every customer and donor feels welcome, valued and an integral part of our shared community. Every Pearl’s supporter can participate in creating a better world by using their hard earned dollars to support equality, anti-violence, sustainability and environmental action, and diverse community initiatives.
Our store relies heavily on the support of our volunteers, donors and customers who make Pearl’s the destination it is today. Together with our trained staff, we are able to continue to grow and better return the support we have enjoyed to our community. We are committed to the ongoing pursuit of a fairer, more sustainable world for all.
When you shop at or donate to Pearl’s, you can be certain that:
- Every dollar of profit goes towards support and services for women, gender diverse folks, youth and children in the Sea to Sky region
- Essential goods and supplies will be provided to people in need, through our HSWC voucher program, directly to vulnerable community members and children in transition, and via allyship with other local nonprofits
- Tonnes of would-be-waste will be diverted yearly from the landfill by re-use and recycling via Pearl’s. Soft goods that are unable to be re-sold are instead re-donated to the Diabetes Association for further recycling.
- Our community will benefit from an active social enterprise committed to building ties and mutual support for all people regardless of gender, sexuality, race, nationality, ability or privilege.
“These were not powerful or prominent women, but they changed everything.” - Margo Goodhand
In the early 1970s, Pearl Souster offered up her own home in Squamish to women in crisis. Her legacy lives on as the namesake for Pearl’s Value & Vintage and other programs such as Pearl’s Transition House.
Pearl’s Value & Vintage History
In the early 1970s, our namesake Pearl Souster offered up her own home in Squamish to women in crisis with nowhere else to turn. Today, Pearl’s Place Transition House carries her torch and her name, and we also honour her legacy with our store name, Pearl’s Value & Vintage.
The Howe Sound Women’s Centre Society opened up Pearl’s Value & Vintage in spring 2000 as a way to raise funds for the drop-in centre and other programs. Originally named Pearl’s 2nds, the first store was entirely volunteer run, occupying previous HSWC office space on Second Avenue in Squamish. Accepting donated items such as clothing from the community, Pearl’s 2nds focused on selling the items inexpensively along with giving them to people in need. The new store also provided work and volunteer experience to people of all ages and backgrounds and opportunities to build community and connections.
In 2006, an opportunity for a more prominent location brought a move to 38128 Cleveland Avenue, with the help of Canada World Youth students. The students also generously helped to renovate the space and to publicize the store throughout the Sea-to-Sky corridor. Further opportunity for growth arrived in January 2011 when Pearl’s acquired the next door storefront, doubling the store floor space to allow for greater volume of donated merchandise.
Our hardworking volunteer base became aided by the addition of some paid staff. At this time, Pearl’s 2nds was renamed to Pearl’s Value & Vintage to reflect its new and improved shopping experience for bargain hunters and seasoned collectors alike.
Pearl’s continued to grow into the community hub that it is now recognized for, winning the hearts of many as well as awards such as the Squamish Chief newspaper’s “Best Place for a Bargain” Reader’s Choice award several years running, and the Squamish Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Award for Non-profit of the Year 2019.
Business ground to an abrupt halt in spring 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic forced the store’s closure for three months. Facing a loss of revenue for the Howe Sound Women’s Centre and loss of access for the community, Pearl’s staff and volunteers safely rallied behind the scenes, and used this unprecedented closure to bring value to the organization via a bright, fun store makeover. The challenges of this time also brought new ideas and renewed our commitment to serving our community, strengthening our resolve to represent our organization’s values of equality, inclusivity, and empowerment for all people.