The Community Welcomes Edmonton's Homeless
The Shaw Conference Centre was host to Edmonton’s homeless today. Over 1100 people attended this special event where they were offered free services from more than 60 agencies. Some of the services offered include: haircuts, counseling, birth control, long distance phone calls, and immunizations. Guests had the opportunity for valuable face time with organizations that offered information about housing, employment and training services. Each guest also left with a care kit containing items such shampoo, lotion, a hair comb and sanitary protection for women.
“It was a great day. The amount of people and services that come together to support our neighbors is exceptional,” says Joanne Currie, Homeless Connect co-chair and Community Investment Specialist with the United Way. “It’s vital that people dealing with homelessness access these services, and it’s wonderful that they can find these easily, on one day and under one roof.”
Edmonton’s third Homeless Connect event featured many exciting new additions, including supervised child care, increased Aboriginal services, and portraits for families and individuals. Aboriginal elders also offered counseling in a teepee and held a two smudge ceremonies.
The support from the community has been tremendous. More than 300 volunteers passionately engaged with the guests and most were eager to report how meaningful the experience was for them.
“I’m very impressed with this event. It’s wonderfully organized,” says first time volunteer Lynn Turnbull. “It’s so wonderful seeing each guest being treated with respect and dignity. I thoroughly enjoyed my day.”
For more information please contact:
Shaw Conference Centre
Project Coordinator, Homeless Connect
Homeless Connect Edmonton is organized by volunteer committees that provide direction and support for the event. Homeward Trust Edmonton, a not-for-profit organization providing leadership and resources towards ending homelessness, coordinates the overall work plan and ensures the event aligns with similar Edmonton initiatives.