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Lack of funding forces closure of Kelowna overnight homeless shelter

Image Credit: www.innfromthecoldkelowna.org
February 20, 2015 - 1:07 PM

KELOWNA - Homeless people in need of a warm place to spend the night will have fewer options next week.

In an effort to protect their year-round services, Inn From the Cold is closing their overnight services as of March 1, 2015 due to lack of funding, according to a media release.

Normally, the overnight services run during the coldest months. The organization's decision to end the service early will not affect other programs they have in place to protect those most at risk. They will still focus on finding permanent solutions for homelessness through programs designed to transition people into homes, connecting them with support services for continued success. 

“It’s apparent the Kelowna community has a need for housing,” Inn From the Cold chairman of the board Mark Dixon says in the media release. “So, with our limited funding dollars, our decision is to provide permanent housing year-round by reducing our short-term, temporary housing seasonally as needed.”

This winter the shelter opened Nov. 15, 2014 providing 35 beds.

Over the coming week, the Inn From the Cold outreach team will work with shelter guests to help them make the transition into housing, as well as identifying specific needs to connect them with partner community organizations, the media release says.

Inn From the Cold will continue to offer it's year-round programs including Chandler House which provides permanent supportive housing for eight individuals in the community who have experienced chronic homelessness; the Inn Home Support Program which connects those experiencing homelessness with an outreach worker; the Free Store to get items like outdoor gear, clothing and toiletries; and the Kelowna Kodiaks soccer team which gives homeless as well as marginalized members of the community an opportunity to participate and benefit from the team-building sport of soccer.

Inn From the Cold is a charity organization funded through sought-out opportunites, in-kind donations as well as participation from the community in fundraising initiatives such as the Dining Out to End Homelessness dinner series and the Push to End Homelessness shopping cart race.

For information on tickets for the charity's fundraising events, to make donations or explore volunteer opportunities, visit the Inn From the Cold website or call 250-448-5153.

To contact a reporter for this story, email jmcdonald@infonews.ca, call 250-575-0521. To contact the managing editor, email Marshall Jones at mjones@infotelnews.ca or call 250-718-2724.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015
InfoTel News Ltd

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