Warm Volunteers Make Coldest Night a Success

243 enthusiastic walkers participated in Nanaimo’s 4th annual Coldest Night of the Year walk this last Saturday, February 21. The walk raises awareness for the plight of many people in our community who find themselves homeless. Donors sponsored walkers to complete 2, 5, or 10 Kilometer loops around Harewood, South Nanaimo, and the Old City Quarter. 80 other communities across Canada organized similar walks this year, up from 63 last year.

Nanaimo has been involved since the campaign went national in 2012. The event has growing community involvement on Vancouver Island with 3 new communities participating this year: Victoria, Campbell River, and Oceanside.

Nanaimo saw the number of volunteers working to make the event a success swell to 67 this year. Volunteers served at the registration desk, along the route as route marshals, in support vehicles, and by making and serving food and beverages at the rest stop and final destination.

What We Do

What We Do

  • We provide emergency shelter, supportive and transitional housing, and services for women.
  • We also provide short and long term housing and support for adults experiencing a mental health crisis.
  • We employ over 50 frontline workers in 6 locations in Nanaimo and Parksville.
  • Frontline workers provide clients with meals, clothing, emotional support, non-clinical assessments, and case management. We work with and refer clients to the clinical supports offered by local Mental Health and Substance Use teams.
  • We have extensive experience supporting individuals impacted by trauma, abuse, and mental illness. Our staff are kind caring professionals trained in providing support to vulnerable adults.

Coldest Night of the Year Event Raises Funds and Awareness for Homelessness

Child With CNOY Baloons

2014 CNOY WalkersIt may not have technically been the coldest night this winter, but it ended up being one of the snowiest! 

On Saturday February 22, about 200 Nanaimo and Parksville area residents gathered at John Barsby Community School in Nanaimo to don "Coldest Night of the Year" toques, turn in their pledges, and walk together down the wet and slippery streets to raise much needed funds for the Island Crisis Care Society. 

The snow never let up and neither did the walker's resolve to finish the 2, 5, or 10 Kilometer loops around Harewood, South Nanaimo, and the Old City Quarter. 63 communities across Canada participated in the event this year and collectively raised a national total of $2,327,863.00.

Coldest Night of the Year February 22nd, 2014

Mary's Place

Mary's Place is one of three second stage housing options offered to women as part of a two year pilot project funded by BC Housing and ICCS. Watch this excellent Nanaimo Shaw TV report on how Mary's Place has turned out to be a "good news" story for Jennifer:

Background

In 2012 ICCS identified gaps in the housing continuum following the successful opening of new supportive housing in Nanaimo. While many chronically homeless individuals were delighted to move into permanent supportive housing, others continued to return to Samaritan House for a variety of reasons. Significant among these was the need for greater support during each day and a quality that many individuals described about Samaritan House that they had really missed. They described this quality with words like "community," "acceptance," and "familiar." In 2013 ICCS collaborated with BC Housing to plan and launch a pilot project to gather data over a two year period on which combination of services provided the best support for women who fell through the identified gaps.

Housing First

Coldest Night of the Year February 22nd, 2014

The Coldest Night of the Year is a fantastically fun, family-friendly walking fundraiser that raises money for the hungry, homeless and hurting in 64 communities across Canada. For the third year the event will be held in Nanaimo. This year our goal is $50,000 so we need your help! The 2, 5 and 10km WALK is held on Saturday, February 22rd, 2014, and provides participants the opportunity to experience a hint of the challenges faced by those experiencing homelessness while raising much needed revenue for their favourite local charity . Since 2011 the Coldest Night of the Year has raised $2.4 million dollars through the tireless efforts of each of our well known and well respected location partners (charities). Grab some friends or family and sign up online at www.coldestnightoftheyear.org

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