Groups working to end homelessness are finding demand for necessities exceeding what’s on hand.
On Saturday, several of them combined efforts to hold a supply drive to raise essential items for people experiencing homelessness.
“We’re doing a donation drive for survival gear,” said Patty Alvarado of the Indigenous Women’s Sharing Society, one of the groups taking part.
The drive started because of the extraordinary rate that local agencies are going through necessities for clients.
“Supplies are just going out the window,” said coordinator Angela Fletcher of the Comox Valley Coalition to End Homelessness.
The drive took place through the morning and early afternoon at Simms Millennium Park. Collaborating agencies have been CVTS homelessness programs, Community Cares Peer Outreach, Indigenous Women’s Sharing Society, the Community Action Team and Comox Valley Street Outreach and the ministry. As well, organizers said groups that did not have the chance to contribute will also receive supplies for unhoused people.
For the drive, the organizers were looking for items such as tents, tarps, sleeping bags, blankets, personal hygiene items and food. People brought donations during the day, and the organizers were also helped by a $1,000 donation from Island Hearts of Hope.
“The community is pretty great about coming together,” Fletcher said.
As part of the event, along with an Elders’ circle, Indigenous Women’s Sharing Society and Unbroken Chain organized the entertainment, as Native with Pride and Sirreal provided hip hop on the dais at the park.
If anyone has items to donate, they can contact Fletcher at email@example.com.