Globe & Mail: Deadline to save Kogawa's old home draws near – by Petti Fong
Yesterday I got home… after having a snack with
Joy, and watching the filming of the Global News story… I found a
message on my voice mail from Globe & Mail reporter Petti Fong,
Darn… I missed another media quote opportunity!
Constable Bob Underhill, Joy Kogawa and Todd Wong at the “Order of Canada / Flag Day” luncheon hosted by The Canadian Club – see story at
I really like that Petti included the quote “If everyone who had read Obasan donated $1, enough money would be raised to preserve the house.
I keep telling people… that I would prefer see 100,000 people donate $10 each rather than one person donate $1 Million Dollars. Kogawa House is a community house. It lives in Joy's novels Obasan and Naomi's Road. It should be the community that saves it, uses it, and cherishes it.
Please donate to Kogawa House by calling The Land Conservancy
Tell them Toddish McWong sent you….
5655 Sperling Avenue
Burnaby, BC V5E 2T2
Deadline to save Kogawa's old home draws near
the end of March, she's hoping that enough money will be raised to save
her childhood Vancouver home from demolition and turn it into a
But with the
deadline just six weeks away, fundraising has reached just $160,000,
far below the $1.25-million needed to buy the house from the current
owners and maintain it as a writers' retreat.
Ms. Kogawa lived in the house in the Marpole area for just six years,
the bungalow has become a symbol for many far greater than a place
where a writer once lived.
family were removed from Vancouver and interned in the Interior town of
Slocan. Like thousands of Japanese-Canadians, their property, including
the house in Marpole, was confiscated.
nearly 100 years, the bungalow has sat on West 64th Avenue. After Ms.
Kogawa's family was forcibly removed during the Second World War, a
succession of owners lived at the house.
city hall voted last November to delay demolition to allow for heritage
preservation efforts, fundraising began in earnest to keep the house
from being destroyed.
Baker with the conservancy said donations ranging from $30 to thousands
have come in, but still more is needed. Faculty at Toronto's York
University have pledged $1,000 and urged other faculties across the
country to match or beat their donation.
Kogawa, who talked to students yesterday at a Canadian Club luncheon in
downtown Vancouver, said she's hoping for a miracle. “It's miraculous
enough that the house itself has survived for so long,” she added.