A local shelter for the unhoused and less fortunate in Campbell River has opened up 20 beds for those in need.
According to Shawn Decaire, who works for the Laichwiltach Family Life Society and manager of Kwesa place and Kwesa Shelter, this year is the second time they have opened these beds to the public, with the first time being last winter.
He says in terms of getting these beds open, it comes down to contacting BC Housing for funding.
“After that it’s the logistics and making sure that you have staffing,” said Decaire.
“Realistically staffing is probably the biggest issue around to have a shelter, because it’s not easy for people to stay awake all night and not do anything.”
Even with these beds available for use, Decaire says the shelter is currently at capacity with the space they have.
They hope to get more beds as there is still a need for them.
“The ongoing dream is to come to some form of collaboration between the city and the non-profits to find approachable housing that will keep everybody safe and well,” said Decaire.
“It’s always a struggle to find that balance and there’s got to be a lot of partners at the table to make something like that work.”
He adds that a way you can help includes having conversations with the people and organizations on what they need in that moment, ranging from blankets to jackets.