Overnight warming room for unsheltered residents to open in December: Northumberland County

An overnight warming room will once again be available for community members in need this winter. Coordinated by Transition House Shelter with funding from Northumberland County, warming room services will be available at St. Peter’s Anglican Church — 240 College Street, Cobourg — from 8:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. seven days a week starting December 5, 2022. This winter relief measure will be in place until the end of March 2023.

“The overnight warming room ensures additional safe spaces in Northumberland where residents in need can take shelter from the cold and access washrooms and light refreshments during the winter months,” states County Director of Community and Social Services Lisa Horne. “We are pleased to be able to partner with Transition House Shelter and St. Peter’s Church to once again make this service available, as an extension of existing supports and resources in place for at-risk individuals in our community.”

Over the next several weeks, Transition House will be finalizing arrangements for the warming room, including staff recruitment and training. Members of the Homelessness Leadership Table—a collaboration of local agencies involved in the direct provision of programs and services for those experiencing homelessness —are also examining possible services that could be delivered on-site during the daytime hours, based on feedback from community members with lived experience.

“The warming room offers an alternative to the emergency shelter environment, ensuring that we are able to meet people along a spectrum of need as the temperature drops,” says Transition House Shelter Executive Director Holly Ferguson. “As the lead for coordinated access to homelessness services in Northumberland, Transition House Shelter is pleased to once again be collaborating with community partners like the County and St. Peter’s to provide a warming room, increasing capacity within the local homelessness system to support residents seeking shelter from the cold during the winter months.”

Beyond warming room availability, expanded emergency shelter system capacity remains in place, with overflow spaces available through the local motel system should Transition House Shelter become full. A recent investment from the Government of Canada through the Reaching Home initiative will enable a further increase in shelter system capacity this winter, funding additional motel rooms, along with expanded diversion and housing support services.

Individuals with immediate needs are encouraged to access emergency shelter and diversion supports through Transition House Shelter by visiting the shelter at 10 Chapel Street, Cobourg or calling 905-372-9562.

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