Published

Seeking shelter

The numbers of people experiencing homelessness climbed during the COVID-19 pandemic, and local shelters stepped up to help give people a safe place to stay.

Here are three examples of how shelters in our community kept people safe during the pandemic thanks to generous Atlantic Compassion Fund donors:

Freedom Foundation

Freedom Foundation is a supportive housing program for men living with addictions. During the pandemic, two staff members selflessly decided to isolate at the home with Freedom Foundation residents. This allowed them to keep serving their clients without putting their families’ health at risk. Atlantic Compassion Fund donors helped support these staff.

Elizabeth Fry Society

Physical distancing is next to impossible in a correctional facility. Elizabeth Fry Society successfully advocated for temporary releases of provincially incarcerated women who faced a high risk of COVID-19. Atlantic Compassion Fund donors provided safe and temporary accommodation for five women as well as food, medication and cleaning supplies for others who are able to return home.

Shelter Nova Scotia

Pop-up shelters reduced the number of people in existing shelters so they could better meet physical distancing requirements. This is a good thing. However, it was difficult to find and keep front-line shelter staff due to the risks and disparities in wages between locations. Atlantic Compassion Fund donors helped Shelter Nova Scotia provide a small increase to hourly wages in a show of good faith and appreciation to their staff. Without those staff members, their shelters would have closed.