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Urban Systems is a professional consulting firm committed to creating ideas and meaningful ways to contribute to their local community. Through the Urban Systems Foundation, staff give back to Kelowna and surrounding communities through employee-driven Foundation initiatives. Today, we highlight their incredible contributions over the years in helping to further the mission of the YMCA of Okanagan. 

The relationship started when Tim Blackburn, Urban Systems Senior Transportation Engineer and Principal, served as a member on the YMCA Board between 2000-2008. Tim was instrumental in helping the YMCA access funds from the Urban Systems Foundation which began supporting the YMCA Strong Kids Campaign, ensuring that every low-income child and family had equal access to Y programs.

In 2010, the Urban Systems Foundation team volunteered their time and resources to install shade sails at the Y’s Little Scholars Playing to Learn Child Care Centre, providing much needed cover from the sun so the children could maximize their outdoor play during the summer months.

Over the five years that the YMCA operated Silver Lake Camp, Urban Systems provided expertise to develop a sustainable water system, donated a garage door to enclose the boathouse, and actively volunteered in clearing and maintaining several hiking trails, as well as building directional and informative nature signage. 

Urbanites have been participating in the Y’s Cycle for Strong Kids event since 2015 and have raised over $3,000 to date! This year they are planning to move the needle even further. On Wednesday, May 16, the Urban Systems Foundation is holding a “Cycle for Cycle for Strong Kids” event in their office of about 50 staff with four spin bikes, 10-minute bike relays, donation challenges and charitable messaging. The Urban Systems team is focused on building a culture of philanthropy in their own backyard.