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Vernon adds more beds to temporary winter shelter program

Another five beds for people experiencing homelessness have opened in Vernon's temporary winter shelter.
Another five beds for people experiencing homelessness have opened in Vernon's temporary winter shelter. Courtesy: Turning Points Collaborative Society

Another five beds have been added to Vernon’s temporary winter shelter program.

The program, which is run by Turning Points Collaborative Society, now has space for 25 people who are experiencing homelessness.

Since the start of the latest winter storm, shelter staff have had to turn away between five and six people a day, according to a news release.

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“It’s not that we are seeing an increase in our community of people experiencing homelessness, it is just that many people who have been sleeping rough are now looking to come in from the cold,” said Lisa Church, manager of the Gateway and temporary winter shelters.

“By expanding the temporary winter shelter program, we hope to accommodate the individuals wanting to come in from the cold.”

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Turning Points Collaborative Society estimates that on any given night, there are still more than a dozen people sleeping rough in Vernon.

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The society operates two shelters and one temporary winter shelter with funds from BC Housing. With the latest expansion, it will provide 111 individuals with nightly accommodation.

The temporary winter shelter is expected to close around the end of March.

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