The Victoria Cool Aid Society has opened additional beds now that the Emergency Weather Protocol is activated. (Victoria Cool Aid Society/Facebook)

More Greater Victoria shelter beds available during freezing temperatures

Emergency Weather Protocol activated on Feb. 3

The Victoria Cool Aid Society was slightly over capacity Sunday night.

On Monday, the temperature in Victoria was a chilly -5 C – with wind chill bringing the temperature closer to -10.

The Victoria Cool Aid Society offers 109 beds year-round and 40 additional beds over the winter – from Nov. 1 to March 31. During the activation of the Emergency Weather Protocol (EWP), Cool Aid opens an additional 20 mats at their Rock Bay Landing location.

Joann Connolly, manager of the Victoria Cool Aid Society shelters at Rock Bay Landing, said the society often sees its bed usage go down during an EWP because clients have more options.

But not this week.

“So we typically see it go down, but this time we didn’t, we actually saw it increase,” she said. “I’m assuming that’s due to the really cold temperatures and the snow and the wind.”

Connolly said Cool Aid took in 21 people at their 20-bed Rocky Bay landing emergency location, and 43 people at the 40-bed temporary shelter at the Downtown Community Centre at 755 Pandora Ave.

“We have to say no to some extent, especially in the temporary shelter, especially because it’s a small space – it’s a gym,” she said, adding that staffing and fire regulations limit intake to 45 people at the downtown centre.

RELATED: Wet weather leads to extreme weather protocol in Victoria

RELATED: Extreme Weather Protocol activated in Greater Victoria

The temporary shelter offers a hot meal, some toiletries and clean clothes and staffing to direct clients to different resources.

Victoria’s EWP was activated Feb. 3 when temperatures dropped across the south Island.

The EWP is a community-based initiative to increase the number of shelter spaces available during winter weather conditions such as heavy wind, snow, rain and temperatures below 0 C.

With the help of organizations such as Our Place Society and the Salvation Army, an additional 115 spots open up for overnight shelter when the EWP is activated.

RELATED: Victoria Cool Aid Society looks to beautify city with art

RELATED: Cool Aid struggles to find temporary housing for Cedar Grove residents



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Midway will open early at the 2019 Saanich Fair

This year the fair will pilot a “sneak peek” and the main stage will feature April Wine

Cross-examination begins for Oak Bay dad accused of killing daughters

Andrew Berry is charged in the deaths of six-year-old Chloe and four-year-old Aubrey in 2017

Camosun mechanical engineering project solve real-world problems

Showcase included projects that confound conventional wisdom, garner industry interest

Arenas, fitness centre ready for action after significant flood at Saanich recreation centre

Library branch, archives remain closed after Thursday night flood

Speculation tax forces sale of Oak Bay’s ‘Tulip House’

Bob and Jan Fleming selling their retirement home famous for its thousands of tulips

B.C. sockeye returns drop as official calls 2019 ‘extremely challenging’

Federal government says officials are seeing the same thing off Alaska and Washington state

Expanded support to help B.C. youth from care attend university still falling short

Inadequate support, limited awareness and eligibility restrictions some of the existing challenges

Ethnic media aim to help maintain boost in voting by new Canadians

Statistics Canada says new Canadians made up about one-fifth of the voting population in 2016

Dog attacked by river otters, Penticton owner says

Marie Fletcher says her dog was pulled underwater by four river otters in the Penticton Channel

POLL: Should there be a ban on gas-powered leaf blowers?

We’ve all heard them, and most likely cursed them under our breath.… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of Aug. 23

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Wife charged in husband’s death in Sechelt

Karin Fischer has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of her husband, Max

B.C. Hydro applies for rare cut in electricity rates next year

Province wrote off $1.1 billion debt to help reverse rate increase

Most Read