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Homelessness Awareness March 2017

From October 8 to 14, 2017, communities across Metro Vancouver are recognizing Homelessness Action Week. To raise public awareness and rally local solutions for the widespread issue of homelessness, Sources Advocacy Programs is organizing the 12th Annual Homelessness Awareness March. The March will take place at Sources Newton Resource Centre (#102 – 13771 72A Ave., Surrey) on Friday, October 13, from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. (registrations opens at 10:30 a.m.). Everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate.

There will be speeches and morning coffee provided by Coast Capital Savings prior to the March. A light lunch will be served following the March. We are pleased to announce that we will be giving away adult clothing. We will be also distributing new children’s clothing, which has been generously donated by Loblaw’s. We are gratefully accepting donations of new socks, gloves, toques and coats. Please drop off donations at Newton Resource Centre on the day of the March. Door prizes and goodie bags will also be distributed.

Sources Advocacy Program assisted 88 people for housing loss, and 619 people with accessing income supports, resulting in greater housing stability. Moreover, 413 people were at imminent risk of homelessness, while an additional 35 homeless individuals were assisted to obtain and maintain housing. “The 2017 Homeless Count numbers show a 49% increase in homelessness in Surrey,” said Sources Advocacy Programs Manager, Soraya VanBuskirk. Surrey has the second largest homeless population in Metro Vancouver.

“There are many structural challenges and barriers that allow homelessness to continue and grow,” said Sandra Galbraith, Director of Sources Cornerstone Care & Community Services. “There is a lack of affordable housing. If affordable, the lack of safety makes them less-than-ideal housing choices. There is also an absence of user-friendly support systems; individuals are often unaware of resources available. In turn, this can limit their opportunities to make choices and, if they desire, changes in their lives.”

“The March addresses homelessness by raising public awareness and knowledge of resources,” said Galbraith. “Those in attendance come from different walks of life – the homeless community, businesses, politicians, and so on. Despite these differences, attendees are standing in solidarity to build and raise awareness, and address homelessness.”

We hope to see you at our 12th annual Homelessness Awareness March! Engage in local initiatives that bring public awareness and understanding to the issue of homelessness in the Greater Vancouver region. See the posters below to see events happening in the Surrey area.