Kamloops shelter bracing for busy winter

By Greg Fry
October 18, 2017 - 9:10am

KAMLOOPS —The executive director of a Kamloops shelter is bracing for another busy winter helping those in need.

Stan Dueck with New Life Community Kamloops says they'll be ready when it hits, which includes providing a safe haven for the city's homeless, the working poor, and those on fixed social assistance rates.

"It's getting colder outside at nighttime so people are starting to look for warmer clothing without a doubt," he says. "We will go through lots more blankets, the heavier jackets, socks, winter boots, shoes. All those type of things. Also toiletries like razors, toothpaste. There's people looking for those things and we'll be handing them out."

As always, he says the mission's dental program will be running and they'll be offering "hot and healthy" lunches seven days a week.

With that in mind, Dueck welcomes donations.

"Oh, we never stop accepting donations, whether that's food, coffee, financial donations. Eighty per cent of everything that comes in our door comes from the community so we're always dependent on that."

Surprisingly, he says the official number of homeless in Kamloops has stayed static over the past five years at around 100 people though he figures that number is much higher.

"The 100 homeless are the ones we know about. There's many more, the hidden homeless, too. The couch surfers, those who sleep in their cars. The number could be in the hundreds."

Slightly colder, snowier than average winter predicted for Kamloops