Our Mission

United We Can is a charitable organization established to support environmental, social, and economic improvement in Vancouver. The mandate is to create economic opportunities for people with multiple barriers living in the Downtown Eastside, through environmental initiatives. United We Can strives to improve working conditions for binners by ensuring they have access to a safe working environment and that they receive the full deposit on all their bottles and cans.

United We Can’s first major undertaking, the “United We Can Bottle Depot”, was created by and for Vancouver’s binners. It opened in 1995 and it continues to thrive today. This bottle depot is the largest social enterprise project hosted by United We Can, which grew out of a vision of creating “green-collar” jobs while helping our local community and the people within it.

Meet Our Team

Gerry Martin
Gerry MartinGeneral Manager
Gerry Martin is the General Manager of United We Can and reports directly to the Board of Directors. Gerry’s background involves a successful track record in volunteer work for social organizations as well as employment with large, well known corporations such as Sears and FedEx. Gerry has shown a talent for analyzing all levels of an organization and working with people to develop processes and find innovative solutions to increase overall performance. Gerry’s extensive experience has taught him that the most important factor leading to the growth and success of an organization is the people involved.
Howard Henry
Howard HenryDepot Manager
Originally from Toronto Howard has lived in the Vancouver downtown eastside prior to working at united we can. First involving himself with a housing community. Which currently include the building the Oasis, 40 East Hasting St. Bruce Erikson 380 Main St and the Bridget Moran, 668 Powell. He joined United We Can in 1994 first volunteering then employed. He participated the SOLE Board which helped establish multiple changes one being the acknowledgment binners. Working with Neighbour Housing Society helped insure proper long term housing for many people of the DTES which include many of the employees of United We Can. Recently Howard volunteers on a committee for person with mental health disorders like anxiety, PTSD, and Depression. Beside donation anonymously to organizations Howard is an avid bicycler and rests doing meditation and yoga.
Richard Ivanauskis
Richard IvanauskisLanes & Crossroads Manager
Born and raised in British Columbia, Rick has had the pleasure of working and traveling across Canada. Rick has worked with United We can for 18 years. He first started as a labourer before being promoted to a supervisor for both the Depot and Street Cleaner teams. Rick is proud of the time he has spent with United We Can and is looking forward to celebrating his 20 year company anniversary!
Yvonne Tham
Yvonne ThamAccountant
Yvonne was born in Bombay (now Mumbai) India and raised in Hong Kong.

In 1992 she immigrated to Vancouver Canada and in 2001 started working for United We Can doing a variety of jobs throughout the facility.

After studying part time at BCIT she graduated with a degree in accounting. Today Yvonne is responsible for many accounting functions on a daily basis such as Payroll , GST , WCB, and monthly statements for both boards .In her spare time Yvonne is a volunteer for S.U.C.C.S.S. , Canada Revenue short term tax season and Free Geek which is a computer recycling non-profit organization.

Yvonne is proud to be a member of United We can as she feels we are very honest and do not take advantage of those who rely on our services. She is committed to helping the environment through recycling but more importantly is very proud of the many people that United We Can employs on both a full time and part time basis.