- In 2011 the Lighthouse provided 131 women and 217 men with emergency shelter.
- There were 1149 stays in the women’s shelter and 2601 stays in the men’s.
- Women stayed on average 9 nights and the men stayed 12 nights.
But in reality it seems that some people just need the shelter for 1 or 2 nights or the weekend, and some stay for quite a long time because they have no where else to go. They hope to move into one of our 68 apartments but there is such a large waitlist that we are not able to help everyone who needs a place. We often have a couple of people, usually men, who are going on into their second or third month in the shelter. One of our clients stayed over 100 days in the shelter last year.
- Our shelter has a capacity of 17 women’s beds and 17 men’s beds but we are opening a new women’s shelter which will have 20 beds in it.
Some of our clients only stay once and some return multiple times in a single year. I’m sad when clients I have got to know well leave but happy for them that they have found a new home. I am especially sad when I see those people return once again to our shelter because their cheques didn’t come through on time, their accommodations were only temporary, they didn’t get along with their landlord, physical or mental health issues, addictions, or other issue arose forcing then back to our dormitories. It seems many of our clients just can’t find the type of housing that is appropriate for them.
Thank you for your support in 2011 and your continued support in 2012. So much is going to happen this year at the Lighthouse it is truly unbelievable and slightly overwhelming. We are going to be doubling our affordable housing units in June, plus a new kitchen and dining room, employment office, nurses station, and new offices for the staff. Plus the new women’s shelter is slated to open soon, a designated mental health wing with emergency respite room and many other projects we are working on to help those in need in Saskatoon.
We are so excited to be able to provide more long-term housing for those people we meet in our shelters. They are the ones who need it the most.