Kamloops volunteers to honour lives of homeless people who died this year - InfoNews

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Kamloops volunteers to honour lives of homeless people who died this year

A memorial service to honour homeless people who have died this year will be held this weekend. The service is being organized by Out of the Cold shelter program coordinator, Renee Stein.
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July 11, 2018 - 11:00 AM

KAMLOOPS -  A memorial service to honour more than 20 individuals who lived most of their lives homeless will be held this weekend in Kamloops.

Renee Stein, the program coordinator at Out of the Cold shelter — which is currently the Out of the Heat Shelter for the summer — says the memorial service will honour homeless individuals who have passed away. Stein says the memorial is to remember those individuals who struggled with homelessness.

"Everyone is important and is deserving of honour and remembrance," she says.

Stein says she encourages anyone who has a memory to share about someone they knew to come to the memorial. She says it's been difficult to track down the number of homeless deaths throughout the city.

"It's hard to track names, plus you have street nicknames so it gets harder," she says. "We have been to so many service agencies and pounded the pavement."

Stein guesses the memorial will honour over 20 individuals. She explains that this is the first time the shelter has hosted this type of memorial, but in the past there have been ceremonies held by other organizations for those affected by overdose deaths.

"An overdose doesn't always mean you're homeless, and being homeless doesn't mean you are an addict," Stein says, calling this memorial "all-inclusive."

The memorial service will be held on Saturday, July 14 from 11 a.m. to noon at St. Paul's Anglican Cathedral in the church sanctuary. The service will also include a sacred drumming circle from the Tk'emlúps te Secwepemc First Nations.

"Following the service, we will be making an art memorial piece using river rocks with the name of those who have passed away," Stein says. "We will then put them into a dry river bed memorial piece at the church."

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