With no end in sight to frigid temperatures, the Province says it is prepared to help the region’s homeless stay out of the cold.
Funding has been extended for 124 temporary winter shelter spaces in Vancouver until the end of January.
The province made the announcement today that these spaces will remain open from six in the evening to eight the next morning.
The B.C. government says 20 of those spaces are reserved for women.
Executive Director of Lookout Aid Society Shayne Williams says that’s a good thing.
“Well I think it’s very important to have women-only spaces, they don’t always feel comfortable in co-ed shelter situations situations, and many of the extreme weather programs are very very basic. All they do is provide a space where folks to come in and quite often have to sleep on mats.”
Williams says the province can still do more regarding mental health and addiction strategies to keep people off the streets.
“You know I’d certainly like to see things done outside of Vancouver itself, it’s not the only community that struggles with homelessness.”
Three of the four sites being funded were operating only as extreme weather shelters, open during extremely bad conditions.
They will now stay open seven days a week until the end of next month.
Twenty of the shelter spaces are for women only, at 143 Dunlevy Avenue from 6 p.m. to 8 a.m.
The three other locations are located on E. Cordova, Cambie Street and Helmcken Street.
- 20 spaces (women only) at 143 Dunlevy Ave – 6 p.m. to 8 a.m.
- 40 spaces at 119 E Cordova St. – 8 p.m. to 8 a.m.
- 24 spaces at 828 Cambie St. – 4 p.m. to 8 a.m.
- 40 spaces at 609 Helmcken St. – will open in the new year