Over 200 walkers together raised over $52,000 for the Coldest Night of the Year walk in Saskatoon which raised funds for the Bridge and the Lighthouse. Thanks also to the Saskatoon Transit, Co-op and PotashCorp for their support!
More than 30 homeless people in Saskatoon have warm new winter coats, thanks to a small group of young aboriginal people.
“I felt really good. I knew these people, I work with these people every day, and to see the looks on their faces and their gratitude, it was an awesome, awesome feeling,” said Dawn Mentuck, a stabilization unit support worker at The Lighthouse, Saskatoon’s downtown shelter.
This is the third year the group has set out to help people in need over the holidays, Mentuck said. They include Matreaca Munro, Myrna Durocher, Tricia Gardypie, Julia Mudrey, Lanny McDonald and Rylan Smallchild.
Mentuck often sees people in extreme need come through the Lighthouse doors.
“Some of them don’t have any kind of income — they’re not on social services, they don’t have an address where they can stay, so there’s a lot of people that use the shelter and detox and use the outreach van, and these were the kind of people we were aiming for.”
While the city has programs to help, such as free meals at the Friendship Inn, homeless people have trouble finding places to pick out clothing they need, she said.
The group raised $1,638 at a steak night earlier this month, which bought 26 men’s coats, 11 women’s coats, and a gift card for a woman with three children whose house had burned down.
They gave away most of the coats on Sunday, with a few left in the outreach van to hand out.
“The reaction was so awesome. Most of the time they would give us big hugs and smiles and big thank-yous — just awesome expressions of gratitude,” Mentuck said.
Formerly homeless Veteran, Teddy shares his story of recovery and hope at the Lighthouse encouraging others to make changes in their lives. Way to go Teddy!
Dogs aren’t just household pets anymore. A research project between three Canadian universities — including the U of S — is studying the effects dogs have on people with mental illness through therapy and counselling. We love having these dogs come and visit with us!
The Therapy Dogs visit many organizations in Saskatoon, and visit the Lighthouse every second Tuesday just after supper. They bring such joy to the Lighthouse – we even get requests for cats!
Thank you Saskatoon CTV for doing the story, St John’s Ambulance for running the program and thanks to our clients who share why they love having the dogs come and visit.
Released on November 20, 2015
The total cost of this project is $4 million. Funding of $1.5 million from the government was provided by the Ministry of Health ($1 million), the Ministry of Justice ($250,000), and the Ministry of Social Services through the Saskatchewan Housing Corporation ($250,000). The City of Saskatoon contributed $126,000 toward the project and additional funding was provided through the Homelessness Partnering Strategy and other fundraising.
“Our government is proud to work with Lighthouse to help vulnerable citizens in this community have improved access to a safe place to live with supports in place if required,” Social Services Minister and Minister responsible for Saskatchewan Housing Corporation Donna Harpauer said. “This aligns with a number of priorities outlined in our Provincial Housing Strategy, which includes supporting individuals and families in greatest housing need. These two initiatives are examples of that vision in action.”
“We are pleased to see the completion of the Lighthouse Stabilization and Wellness Centre project in Saskatoon,” Health Minister Dustin Duncan said. “We are proud to support our community partners like Lighthouse, who are reaching out into communities to help people improve and maintain their health and wellbeing. This project also supports the recommendations in the Mental Health and Addictions Action Plan, specifically ensuring that individuals with addictions issues have access to timely and appropriate care.”
“Our ministry is proud to partner in upgrading this valuable community facility,” Corrections and Policing Minister Christine Tell said. “We know how important it is that places like the Dubé Lighthouse exist to provide shelter and housing for vulnerable individuals who require extra support.”
“We are grateful to the many community members who came together to volunteer and donate toward the ‘Up’ Capital Campaign, Les and Irene Dubé who led with an amazing gift of $1 million, and the Provincial Government for seeing the value in this project,” Lighthouse Executive Director Don Windels said. “We are thankful the expanded Stabilization Unit will be operational before this winter so we can continue to provide emergency shelter to those in need in our community.”
The project features a stabilization shelter with approximately 38 beds for individuals who are manageably intoxicated. The second floor provides programming and office space, and the third floor features a wellness center with exercise facilities and atrium.
Since November 2007, 167 affordable rental units have been completed by the province for those considered ‘hard to house’ and facing multiple challenges such as disabilities and addictions in Saskatoon. Including the Lighthouse, an additional 40 units are currently under construction.
The Lighthouse provides housing for approximately 230 individuals on any given day. It provides 126 permanent housing units and about 94 emergency shelter spaces for vulnerable individuals, including the working poor, people with physical or intellectual disabilities, and people with addictions.