Day of Donation and Services in Duncan for homeless needs winter weather gear

Donations of camping equipment and warm winter gear are needed right away to help a special event to aid the homeless.

Donations of camping equipment and warm winter gear are needed right away to help a special event to aid the homeless.

In honour of Homeless Action Week, the Cowichan Housing Association will be holding a Day of Donations and Services at the Duncan United Church at 246 Ingram St. on Thursday,                  Oct. 13 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The event includes a free hot lunch, snacks and hot drinks as well as free haircuts, and vital services like free dental checkups and foot care.

There will also be free clothing, footwear, blankets, linens, tents, tarps and sleeping bags available.

But, according to CHA’s Wendy Montgomery, donations and volunteers are still needed.

Food is taken care of, but they need more warm clothing and outdoor winter gear, according to Montgomery.

“Every year we put out a call for donations but it always fluctuates. We haven’t had a lot come in so far this year. We especially need tents, tarps, things like that. Even yoga mats are a good one, they will get people off the cold, wet ground. Anything to do with camping. And coats, mittens, scarves, any winter stuff would be great.”

Donations can be brought to Community Futures at 135 Third St. in Duncan from 9 a.m. to              4 p.m. weekdays. “If there are larger quantities they can call me at 250-746-1004 ext 242 and we can come and get the stuff,” she said.

The event is popular with the area’s homeless population.

“They’ve had anywhere from 80 to 130 people from the public show up for them in the past,” Montgomery said. “It’s hard to say; every year is a little different. And even some years when there hasn’t been as many people, the 15 or so service providers who show up have a chance to network and find out about each other’s services so they can help clients find what they need.”