The B.C. government will provide approximately $400,000 in funding to Lookout Emergency Aid Society to operate a new temporary winter shelter in Surrey to ensure people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness have access to a safe, warm place to stay during the cold and wet winter months.
The 40-bed shelter, located at the Dell Hotel site, will be open 24/7 from November 2015 until the end of March 2016 and provide three meals per day.
The Province also will be providing additional funding for Extreme Weather Response shelters in the community, which will open as needed between November and April. Locations will be determined by the end of this month.
Oct. 11-17, 2015, is Homelessness Action Week in B.C., a time to raise awareness and acknowledge those who dedicate their time and effort to help end homelessness in communities throughout the province.
Rich Coleman, Minister of Natural Gas Development and Minister Responsible for Housing –
“Opening additional shelters during the winter is a critical step in addressing homelessness in this province. We have to ensure B.C.’s most vulnerable people have safe shelter when they need it most – only then are we able connect them with the support services that will set them up for more stable, permanent housing.”
Amrik Virk, MLA for Surrey-Tynehead and Minister of Technology, Innovation and Citizens’ Services –
“Once a vulnerable person has the basic need of shelter and warmth met, they can then focus on making the transition from homelessness to recovery and independence. The Lookout Emergency Aid Society will make a real difference in the lives of many this winter.”
Mayor Linda Hepner, City of Surrey –
"The City of Surrey, together with our partners, are making good on fulfilling the need for a winter shelter. It's our belief that a winter shelter will help very street-entrenched people to stabilize, become healthier and, for some, to move into more permanent housing and connect with mental health and addiction services."
Shayne Williams, executive director, Lookout Emergency Aid Society –
“We know that winter shelters make a big difference in the lives of people living on our streets. The winter shelter allows us to serve homeless individuals we wouldn’t otherwise come in contact with. Through these interactions the Lookout Society can help stabilize their lives, connect them with community services and finds them appropriate housing. It’s important to note this work is only possible with the great support from Minister Coleman, B.C. Housing and the municipalities we serve. Working together we’re solving homelessness.”
- Since 2001, the B.C. government has invested $4.4 billion to provide affordable housing for low-income individuals, seniors and families.
- Last year, the Province invested more than $30 million to provide subsidized housing and rent supplements for almost 8,000 households in Surrey.
- This year, more than 102,000 B.C. households will benefit from provincial social housing programs and services.
B.C. shelter map: www.bchousing.org/Options/Emergency_Housing/Map
Lookout Emergency Aid Society: http://lookoutsociety.ca/