Prominent London, Ont. lawyer and family donate $100K to Y.O.U.’s Joan’s Place

A rendering of the upcoming Joan's Place building at Richmond and York streets. supplied by Youth Opportunities Unlimited

A charitable family is donating $100,000 to an upcoming affordable housing and wellness hub in London, Ont., that will serve youth in need.

The donation to Youth Opportunities Unlimited’s (Y.O.U.) upcoming Joan’s Place project was unveiled during the 16th Annual Breakfast, the local charity’s signature fundraising event.

The money comes from prominent London lawyer Barbara Legate, local children’s health advocate Dr. David Wolfe, and the couple’s adult children Alex Wolfe, Amy Soares and Annie Legate-Wolfe.

During the event, Legate described the donation as a passion project for her partner and their children.

Y.O.U. says the $100,000 will be used to create a Children’s Learning Space inside the upcoming facility.

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“We envision moms learning how snuggling with your child and a book can be one of life’s greatest gifts,” Legate said.

“Access to stimulation, exercise through play and other children will start those little ones out on a good path,” she said.

“If we want a healthy community, we must have healthy children, healthy in body, mind and heart. Stability, safety and peace are a very good place to start.”

London, Ont., lawyer Barbara Legate addresses a virtual audience during the 16th Annual Breakfast for Youth Opportunities Unlimited. Youth Opportunities Unlimited /

The charity says it’s now in the final push of its fundraising campaign before construction can begin on the upcoming Joan’s Place.

The 55,000 sq. ft. facility will sit at the corner of Richmond and York streets. It will feature 39 affordable housing units, a youth wellness hub and is expected to serve more than 200 youth daily.

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The facility will be named in honour of former London city councillor and Ontario’s first female solicitor general, Joan Smith.

Y.O.U. has previously said it hopes to begin construction on Joan’s Place sometime this year.

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