With well over 60 years combined experience nurturing people and plants, and still committed to helping others, its not surprising that Evy and Brian Goshko are anchors within the Nanoose community. The owners and operators of the Northwest Bay Nursery on Northwest Bay Road have been helping neighbours in large and small ways since they established their business here 16 years ago.
“People are always coming to ask Brian’s opinion and pick his brain about gardening, landscaping and everything to do with plants and soil and sometimes even animals”, said Evy. The couple shares their 5-acre property with two golden labs, three cats and several hens, chicks and horses. “They are all part of the family”, she says.
What most of their customers and neighbours don’t know is that Evy and Brian are regular contributors to various community assistance services, including the Nanoose Community Services.
“I know what its like to be in a tough spot, I’ve been there”, confides Evy. At one time a struggling single mother, she was working full time and finding it difficult to make ends meet. “Once I had need of electrical work and winter tires for my car and this guy fixed it all up and never even charged me”, she said. Her belief is that many people struggle at one time or another and when back on their feet they want to “pay it forward”.
Evy was a child and youth care counselor with the Nanaimo Family Life program for over 30 years and has a wealth of experience providing support to families including children, teens and mothers in need. She is proud looking back on her career that over 90 percent of the young people she worked with over the years have become successful in their adult lives.
“What many of these kids needed, more than money and resources, was the support and guidance of an adult”, she says. “What they want is respect”, she says of the young teens who often felt rejected by parents or peers.
Evy and Brian are still helping people in the community in various ways, including taking young people under their wing and finding ways they can re-train based upon their individual strengths through the local workability program operating out of a family-owned property adjacent to theirs. Evy is currently a special education assistant with the school district where she lends her considerable experience and big heart to classrooms from Errington to Nanoose. The couple also donates QF gift cards to the Nanoose Community Services and provides various types of assistance as needed to vulnerable people in their neighbourhood and through local organizations such as NCS.
They are shining examples of the NCS slogan ‘Neighbours helping neighbours’