Although the number of homeless rose during the last homeless count

Maple Ridge shelter reduces cold weather beds

Are there fewer homeless, causing drop in demand for emergency shelter at the Salvation Army Caring Place in Maple Ridge

The Salvation Army shelter in Maple Ridge has reduced the number of emergency shelter beds it offers this winter by half.

The Caring Place will only have 15 cold-wet weather spaces available until the end of March, in addition to the existing 25 beds it has year-round.

The reduction isn’t prompted by a cut in funding, but a drop in demand.

“Because of the numbers over the years, we’ve actually felt the need to reduce the beds we would need this year,” said executive director Darrell Pilgrim.

“We’ve always offered 30 beds, but very rarely do we go up over 20 beds needed every night.”

Pilgrim said it’s difficult to pinpoint why  demand has dropped since the people who use the Sally Ann’s services are transient.

“We do want to believe it is because people have found appropriate housing,” he said.

“It’s great to see. There is still demand and need, but we believe the numbers of actual people looking for shelter every night has reduced.”

Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows were the only municipalities in Metro Vancouver, though, where the number of people without a roof over their heads increased during the 2011 Greater Vancouver Homeless Count, a survey conducted every three years.

One hundred and two people were found homeless in March 2011. That was up from 90 in 2008.

Of the 102 – 40 were housed in emergency shelter facilities, while one person was listed as having no fixed address.

The municipalities were the only place in Metro Vancouver where the number of street homeless also rose – to 61 from 40.

The Caring Place still serves more than 600 different people monthly and overall demand for services, such as meals, is not dropping.

“There are still people looking for assistance. The people living in poverty, however is actually increasing,” Pilgrim added.

“I always say I wish I could close my doors. I wish we didn’t need to exist.”

 

Winter needs

The Caring Place is in dire need for new socks and underwear for men and women, as well as shampoo.

Their school bagged lunch program, which serves 110 students at 12 schools, needs luncheon meat and healthy snacks.

• To donate call 463-8296.

 

Red kettles

Kettle season starts next Friday, Nov. 16. Lots of volunteers are needed for a two-hour shifts. To volunteer, call Amy at 604-463-8296 x 104 or email bellringer@caringplace.ca.

 

Just Posted

Ridge Jr. B Flames making additions

Four players sign, two coaches join mix.

UPDATE: Two-vehicle incident on Abernethy Way, Maple Ridge

Road near 227th Street reopens in both directions.

Maple Ridge elementary protest to protect against climate change

Grade 7 Albion students march in front of municipal hall.

Maple Ridge teacher celebrated as inclusive education champion

Carissa Keenan teaches at Harry Hooge elementary.

Haney Rotary ups bursary amounts

Total is $19,000 this year, up from $11,000 in 2018.

New airline regulations bring compensation for tarmac delays, over-bookings

Some of the new regulations will roll out in July, while others are expected for December.

Burnaby facility to dispose of 1,500 tonnes of Canada’s trash from Philippines

All 103 containers will be disposed of properly within Canada before the end of the summer

Scheer says it would take Conservatives five years to balance budget

Scheeraccused the Liberal government of spending $79.5 billion of previously unbudgeted funds

Man wants guilty plea revoked in 2012 collision in Abbotsford that killed Chilliwack woman

Michael Larocque was charged in relation to crash that killed Eileen Kleinfelder

High-risk sex offender released into Surrey

Earon Wayne Giles, a Newton “tag-team rapist,” was released from prison Friday and is now living in Surrey

Vancouver woman sexually assaulted after man follows her home; suspect at large

Police are looking for an Asian man in his 40s after the incident on Vancouver’s east side.

B.C. man, 30, arrested for driving his parents’ cars while impaired twice in one day

The Vancouver-area man was arrested after officers caught him driving impaired twice in one day

UPDATE: Vancouver man dies after crash between motorcycle, transport truck

Police believe speed was a factor in Thursday collision

Trial slated to start Monday for accused killer of Abbotsford cop

Oscar Arfmann faces first-degree murder for death of Const. John Davidson

Most Read