Cowichan Tribes have opened an emergency homeless shelter for youth. (File photo)

Cowichan Tribes have opened an emergency homeless shelter for youth. (File photo)

Cowichan Tribes opens youth homeless shelter

The shelter, located on Cowichan Way, will be open until May

Cowichan Tribes has opened a seasonal emergency youth homeless shelter as part of its commitment to supporting youth.

Located in the former VIU building on Cowichan Way, the shelter will provide overnight accommodations for up to 10 youth, aged 17 and under.

The shelter is open from 3 p.m. to 9 a.m. daily until May, 2021.

Keeping with COVID-19 protocols, the youths are lodged in private rooms, which are renovated offices with a single bed. Cowichan Tribes will provide the youth with food as well as connections for laundry, showers and other community services.

While priority will be given to Cowichan youth members, if space is available non-members will also be housed.

Staff will continue to monitor the usage of the shelter.

If the need exceeds the capacity, they will reassess how they can support youth.

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The emergency youth homeless shelter is funded by Cowichan Tribes with support from Warmland (Canadian Mental Health Association) and the Cowichan Housing Association.

“We are thankful for the partnerships within the community,” said Marnie Elliott, associate health director for Cowichan Tribes.

“With many of us working together, we are able to provide a safe place for our youth. We are also thankful for the many departments within Cowichan Tribes that have worked diligently together to open the doors. We hope to provide a warm space for our youth to find rest and a safe place for their healing journey. Thank you all for making this a reality.”

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