Thursday, July 18, 2024

Saskatoon Organizations Team Up to Expand Winter Shelter Space for Vulnerable Residents

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Last year Prairie Harm saw an average of 60 80 people seeking refuge on cold nights pushing their existing resources to the limit

Facing a growing demand for shelter during harsh winter months, Saskatoon’s Prairie Harm Reduction and the Salvation Army are teaming up to offer expanded support.

Last year, Prairie Harm saw an average of 60-80 people seeking refuge on cold nights, pushing their existing resources to the limit. Recognizing the unsustainable nature of their previous model, they secured crucial funding from the Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnership (SHIP) to implement a crucial change.

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Previously, Prairie Harm’s warming space closed at 10 pm, leaving a gap in essential overnight shelter. Now, thanks to the collaboration, the Salvation Army’s overnight center will open its doors at a nearby St. Mary’s church, providing a seamless transition for those seeking warmth and safety.

Both centers anticipate a surge in visitors this winter. Prairie Harm’s Kayla Demong hails the new model as a positive step, already witnessing a significant increase in user numbers. The Salvation Army’s Gordon Taylor echoes this sentiment, expressing concern about the potential impact of severe weather on the number of people seeking shelter.

The combined warming services will operate until the end of March, offering a vital lifeline to Saskatoon’s vulnerable population during the coldest months.

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