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Charlottetown women’s homeless shelter aims to finally host fundraiser


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CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. — Operators of a Charlottetown’s girls’s homeless shelter are hoping to host their first fundraising occasion for the reason that facility opened in 2019.

The COVID-19 pandemic prevented employees at Blooming Home from having one in 2020 and 2021, whereas post-tropical storm Fiona pressured the cancellation of final yr’s plans.

Trip for Refuge is now scheduled to happen on Sept. 23 within the neighbourhood of East Royalty.

Liz Corney, the co-founder of the shelter and the director of growth, instructed SaltWire in an interview Sept. 8 it has been irritating having to place off fundraising yearly.

“We opened our doorways in 2019, and a yr later the pandemic hit, placing an finish to any ideas of in-person fundraising occasions,’’ Corney mentioned. “By the point we acquired round to eager to do one final yr … Fiona hit every week earlier than the occasion. We needed to cancel the occasion as a result of the occasion was on a path that was lined in timber and folks nonetheless didn’t have energy.’’

Neighborhood donations and authorities funding helped cowl a variety of prices within the first four-plus years, however Corney mentioned donations have been dropping, making the upcoming fundraiser that rather more vital.

“The wants of the shelter and the wants of the ladies we’re serving are rising and rising and rising,’’ Corney mentioned. “Due to that, we’ve got to adapt and broaden. And we’ve got carried out that.’’

Expanded providers

Blooming Home has employed further employees and expanded its checklist of providers past simply supplying a mattress for the evening.

The objective of the fundraiser is $40,000, a complete that has been ongoing for the reason that facility opened.

Bethany Robinson, the neighborhood engagement co-ordinator, mentioned they’re hoping Trip for Refuge places them excessive.

“We’re 1 / 4 of the way in which there now,’’ mentioned Robinson, who joined Corney for the interview with SaltWire.

Loads of prices, similar to a brand new dishwasher that’s set to reach quickly, are lined by neighborhood donations, however Corney says the shelter wants extra assist with preserving the doorways open and including extra providers.

“It’s additionally about simply common working prices, like lights value cash and the warmth prices cash,’’ Corney mentioned. “We’re heading into winter. It prices some huge cash to employees (the shelter). Nearly all of cash … goes towards paying our employees.’

Bethany Robinson, left, community engagement co-ordinator at Blooming House in Charlottetown, and Liz Corney, director of development, say the women’s homeless shelter is low barrier, meaning there are no restrictions on who stays there as long as there is no violence and the guest identifies as a woman. “You don’t have to be sober, you don’t have to be on your mental health meds, you don’t have to be in a program, we require nothing of you,’’ Corney said. - Dave Stewart/SaltWire
Bethany Robinson, left, neighborhood engagement co-ordinator at Blooming Home in Charlottetown, and Liz Corney, director of growth, say the ladies’s homeless shelter is low barrier, that means there are not any restrictions on who stays there so long as there isn’t any violence and the visitor identifies as a lady. “You don’t need to be sober, you don’t need to be in your psychological well being meds, you don’t need to be in a program, we require nothing of you,’’ Corney mentioned. – Dave Stewart/SaltWire

The fundraiser

Trip for Refuge, a run, stroll and bike occasion, begins from the Malcolm Darrach Centre in East Royalty, with the check-in starting at 10 a.m. and the send-off at 11 a.m.

The strolling portion takes walkers on a loop round Andrews Pond Mountaineering Path.

Cyclists will come out on MacRae Drive onto the lively transportation path. The ten-kilometre model sees bikers go to the Brackley Commons and return, whereas the 20-kilometre occasion takes within the Confederation Path out to York and again.

Robinson mentioned contributors need to pre-register at www.rideforrefuge.org/charlottetown. There isn’t any charge related to signing up, and all cash raised by particular person contributors is welcome. People that raised no less than $150 every will obtain a free T-shirt. Following the occasion, the East Royalty Lions Membership will maintain a barbecue.


Blooming Home opened after Corney pitched the concept throughout a networking occasion on the Startup Zone in Charlottetown in 2018.

Brynn Devine jumped on board and now serves as government director.

It was the primary time a low-barrier girls’s shelter had operated in Charlottetown in seven years, after Grandmother’s Home closed. Low barrier means there are few restrictions, past obeying home guidelines and never being violent. Ladies should not have to be sober, on remedy for a psychological sickness or be enrolled in a program to remain on the facility. They do need to be 18 years of age.

“I knew there was this want, and everybody on the (networking) occasion thought I ought to do that. Brynn and I spent a yr researching and attempting to determine how it might virtually work and the way different shelters function.’’

Blooming Home operates with a capability of eight beds. Corney mentioned most are crammed each evening.

Workers embody nurses and social employees. Blooming Home is staffed with two educated professionals every evening.

“There’s an entire mixture of backgrounds that individuals come from, however they’re all extremely educated to take care of chaotic conditions, if that will come up.’’

At a look

Following is details about Blooming Home in Charlottetown:

• It has served greater than 200 girls since opening its doorways in 2019.

• The common occupancy was 90 per cent this summer season.

• It employs 12 employees to run the shelter and the group.

• One of many massive causes for ladies searching for shelter is being evicted and never having household to fall again on.

• Blooming Home might be reached by calling 902-213-9969.

Dave Stewart is a reporter with SaltWire in Prince Edward Island. He might be reached at [email protected] and on X @DveStewart

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