Who Are We

Operation Dawn Canada is a faith based non-profit organization that provides Addiction Recovery Program which helps individuals overcome addiction. Our mission is to empower people to break free from their addictions and start anew through the love and grace of Jesus Christ. Our board of directors, staff, teachers and volunteers are compassionate individuals who understand the challenges of addiction. We are deeply committed to addressing the addiction crisis in our communities and believe that recovery is possible for everyone.

Brief Biography of Rev. John Paul Chan

Rev. John Paul Chan (1922-2010) used to be an aircraft engineer before he received the calling of full-time ministry in his early thirties. Starting from a family cell group, he founded Beautiful Gate Baptist Church, located on College Road in Kowloon. To Rev. Chan, the gospel is the answer to all human needs, and God saves both our body and soul. To provide physical healing, he opened Beautiful Gate Baptist Clinic as well as brought on-site service to the grass root families at the densely populated public housing areas by making use of a clinic van. He set up Beautiful Faith Primary School at a seven-storey resettlement block, aimming to provide Christian education to young kids. It is known that some of the graduates had even served in the beginnig stage of Operation Dawn. In those years, Hong Kong society suffered serious drug problems, and Rev Chan could hardly bear the miserable state of drug addicts lying dead on street, so he went to the gutter of Kowloon Walled City and preached the gospel to them.

Trusting in the bliblical promise, Rev. Chan believed there is always a way out, “if anyone is in Christ, that person is a new creation: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17) Rev. Chan prayed for God’s guidance and reckoned that a rehab centre would give drug addicts a chance of rebirth.

The long road of the ministry of gospel rehabilitation was very tough, but Rev. Chan walked faithfully with God, witnessing lots of miracles of life transformation. Ever since he founded Operation Dawn, numerous miserable drug addicts and their families were saved and healed. Many recovered drug addicts were not only converted, but also became gospel ministers, and some of them started up gospel rehab centres locally and abroad, spreading the ministry of gospel rehabilitation all over the world. Rev. Chan was kind-hearted and filled with vision, and he was creative yet practical, so he had always been an inspiring leader to his fellow colleagues. Because of his submission to God’s calling and perseverance, gospel rehabilitation, a novel ministry no one had ever imagined half a century ago, flourished in the past 50 years, and many people followed in his footsteps.

The contribution of Rev. Chan to Hong Kong society was widely acclaimed. On June 14, 1997, Rev. Chan was presented with the Certificate of Honour by Queen Elizabeth the Second for recognition of his service to Hong Kong. In the same year, the Hong Kong government comissioned The Chinese University of Hong Kong to evaluate the effectivness of gospel rehabilitation, and it was get confirmed. In 2000, Rev. Chan was given “Outstanding Anti-Drug Fighter Life-long Award”, and was called “the Father of Gospel Rehabilitation” in a personal interview by Eastweek magazine, and “the Pioneer of Gospel Rehabilitation in Hong Kong” by Ming Pao. On September 11, 2010, Rev. Chan, aged 88, passed away peacefully in Queen Elizabeth Hospital. His faithful service and life testimony set the best foundation for gospel rehabilitation in Hong Kong. May the Lord bless his ministry.



After witnessing the deadly and mortal effects of drug addiction in the Kowloon Ghettos of Hong Kong in the 1960s, Rev. John Paul Chan (Mennonite Baptist Church) made the decision to dedicate his life to helping drug addicts and their families.


In 1968, Rev. John Paul found the ministry and was able to open the first facility for spiritual therapy in Hong Kong. The result showed that the success rate for recovery at the ministry was significantly higher than any other program. The Hong Kong Government had noticed the statistic and recognized his contribution by assigning a small island outside Lantau Island to the ministry which became their permanent headquarter. The ministry was then formally named as the Dawn Island Rehabilitation Centre.


In 1984, the ministry continued to grow and extended its reach to Taiwan under the leadership of recovered drug addict, Rev. Simon Lau who was sent by Rev. John Paul. Through his hard work and passion for saving drug addicts for 40+ years, Rev Simon Lau had grown the ministry much bigger in size and scope and saved many lives under various addictions. Recognitions and strong support were received from local governments and communities throughout the years. Operation Dawn has now 26 centers operating in different parts of the World e.g. Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand, Myanmar, India, China, the U.S.A. and Canada.


In 2002, Rev. Simon Lau was invited to Toronto by Partner International to share at an evangelical meeting. A group of brothers and sisters from different churches were motivated and willing to commit /volunteer to help promote the work of Operation Dawn in the local Chinese community.


In April 2004, Rev. Simon Lau visited Toronto again. His preaching and testimony continued to receive many positive responses. This plus the life transformation story of Henry – a former drug addict from Toronto who left for the spiritual therapy in Taiwan since 2002 enhanced the awareness of the dark realities of drug addiction and most importantly people knew that God brought answers and solutions to the problems through Operation Dawn.

The Chinese church communities in Toronto responded quickly by bringing two cases to Operation Dawn which were referred by CARE (Christian Aid and Relational Evangelism Inc). This marked the humble beginning of Operation Dawn in Canada. With the provisions and grace from God, the help of the church community and a small group of volunteers Operation Dawn Canada was officially established in Toronto.