Edmonton comes collectively for Homeless Join

Community members banded together on Homeless Connect on Sunday to help and be helped.

The bi-annual event at the Shaw Conference Center began in 2008 to provide a safe place for people affected by homelessness to get help, and now 300 volunteers provide access to nearly 70 services for 1,500 community members.

“Homeless Connect is about bringing communities together, making a commitment to changing the way we think about homelessness and those who experience it, and sharing the goal of ending it all together,” said Susan McGee, Homeward’s chief executive officer Trust Edmonton. “By providing services in one day and one place, guests can meet multiple needs at the same time.”

Services include dental care, clothing, housing and employment information, laundry, haircut, prenatal care, birth control, counseling, and a hot meal.

Sponsored and donated by 25 community organizations, the event is a collaboration between the Homeless Trust, Edmonton Economic Development, Shaw Conference Center and the United Way of the Alberta Capital Region.

“Convention centers are designed to benefit the social, educational and economic environment of their communities,” said Cliff Higuchi, vice president and general manager of the Shaw Conference Center. “As a community hub, the Shaw Conference Center provides services to the public, in this case using our space and event expertise to help Edmontons who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.”

The next event will take place in autumn.

For more information on Homeless Connect Edmonton, please visit www.homelessconnectyeg.com.

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