Ariel Bowers
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Many of our congregation and members of our community have been faithfully committed to serving over the years in the Cold Wet Weather Mat Program (now called the Bridge Shelter program). Some of you have been asking what is happening this fall. Hope For Freedom Society, the organization who has overseen this initiative to serve the homeless, updated the participating churches last week on its status. 

Andrea Corrigan, the Executive Director of Hope For Freedom, writes:

"In conversations with BC Housing, it has been determined that the logistics of the Bridge Shelter can not responsibly operate and balance the requirements of social distancing and Covid-19 safety needs."

In her letter, Andrea Corrigan mentions that the Tri-Cities Emergency Response Centre (ERC), a program that is being operated by Phoenix in close partnership with Fraser Health, is continuing to offer 30 hotel rooms to serve those in the Tri-Cities who are unsheltered. 

She continues:

" From staff and clients at HFFS, we express our  deepest thanks and appreciation for all the hospitality, support and encouragement, meals and donation items.  Your dedication and caring touched so many lives- as important as the safe warm space was the personal connections that brought comfort, and gave so many hope to take the next step."

Hope For Freedom Society continues to offer residential treatment for men and women seeking recovery from drug and alcohol addiction, as well as Outreach and Advocacy services in an effort to address the continuing opioid and overdose epidemic and homelessness crisis. Their website is http://www.hopeforfreedom.org/.