Courtenay council

Courtenay council

Comox Valley coalition tries to deal with homeless encampments

Courtenay asked to fund full-time homeless coordinator position

The Comox Valley Coalition to End Homelessness is appealing to the City of Courtenay for funds to increase its co-ordinator position to full-time. The idea is to enable a co-ordinated community response to homeless encampments that are cropping up and causing challenges for police and City staff.

Coalition member Heather Ney figures the collective would need about $35,000 a year.

“We don’t have a real co-ordinated community response in the Comox Valley, and there is nowhere for people who are homeless to go during the day,” Ney said Monday at Courtenay council.

The coalition has been running a drop-in pilot program called Connect, designed for homeless individuals and those at risk, Wednesdays and Sundays from 1:30-3:30 p.m. at the Courtenay library.

“This is where the coalition has been a bit of a prototype to inform what we hope to build, which would be a permanent drop-in centre for the Comox Valley,” coalition co-ordinator Andrea Cupelli said.