by: Philip Quigley
City: Truro, Nova Scotia
Truro Nova Scotia is a vibrant town in the middle of the province, earning it the nickname of the Hub of Nova Scotia. Seven years ago, several churches joined forces to help provide a solution to the growing evidence of homelessness in the community. They began offering an overnight shelter through the Out of the Cold church based missions program from November 15 to March 31 each year, run totally by volunteers. In January 2014, a group of volunteers began meeting to form an organization now registered as a Canadian charity under the name of the Truro Homeless Outreach Society (THOS). On April 1, 2015, one day after the church based mission ended their final winter of operation, THOS opened a permanent, year round night time shelter. Over the past 15 months, with the help of over 200 volunteers and supports in the community, THOS has provided overnight accommodation and meals to over 120 individuals from or passing through the area. Unfortunately we do not have a permanent home. We are still based out of one of the local churches that has rooms spread over three floors with no shower or laundry facilities. Our current arrangement expires later this year and after an exhaustive search of places for sale or long term lease in our community, we have now decided that our best option is to build. Literally hundreds of people as well as businesses and groups of every form in the community, including GoEasy Financial, have contributed to fundraising, promoting and supporting the work of THOS. In February 2015 and 2016, THOS sponsored Coldest Night of the Year, a national winter walk in late February in support of people who are hungry, hurting and homeless. Ninety-two communities across Canada participated in the walk this past winter and our community came 3rd in the country for the money raised by our 450 walkers. GoEasy Financial was one of two lead sponsors for our event. As further evidence of support, hundreds of people join us on the long weekend each May when we hold a large family friendly event called Concert in the Park. Over the last two and a half years, THOS has raised almost $200,000 toward the cost of a proper building through various fundraising efforts sponsored by our Society as well as events hosted by other businesses, organizations and clubs from our community to benefit our work. We now prepared to move forward and the town is working with us to identify an appropriate piece of land.
Building a homeless shelter, which we will be calling Hub House, is not just about the physical structure of a building but also about the furnishings, equipment and property that is up to code, pleasing to the community and accommodating for guests. If awarded this grant, the $50,000 would be used toward the cost of installing a commercial grade kitchen with commercial grade appliances; purchasing household furnishings such as dining table and chairs, couches, and work tables/desks with computers for guests to access employment, housing and living assistance; items for leisure time activities such as a television; and, finally, to properly landscape the green space surrounding the shelter including a gazebo which would be the designated smoking area.
Truro and surrounding area has a population of over 45,800 people. Not large enough to be called a city, but small enough so you know of and care for your neighbours. Truro is the little town that could, and believe us, we can! Members and volunteers with THOS grew up here, moved here, moved away then came back here or retired here. When this community identifies a community concern, people here work together to create a solution. Not only are people passionate about community leisure and recreation facilities but also about the services and supports to all of its citizens, even those who are only passing through or who do not have any independent means to support themselves. It is for this reason that the Truro Homeless Outreach Society has grown so rapidly in two and a half short years. Less than 5 years ago people in the community, when asked, would have told you that we didn
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Contest open to residents of Canada, excluding Quebec. Chances of winning depend on the application of judging criteria, and on the number of votes received in an online voting process. Form, value and method of distribution of the prize to be determined by goeasy. Eligibility restrictions apply. Click here for full contest rules.
Copyright © 2018 goeasy Ltd.