Sleeping outside to create a safe space inside

Council members, media members and business leaders the morning after Feb. 7 joined 37 Frank’s Dave Berdan in trying to experience a night in the shoes of Strathroy’s homeless.

With enough donations, a new overnight warming centre opened Feb. 14 at 37 Frank Tuesday to Friday from 10pm to 7am for youth age 16-21. Money raised will go towards having staff stay the night to keep the centre safe.

There technically is no bed to sleep the night, as a bylaw is still in the process of being passed in Strathroy-Caradoc that would allow homeless shelters in places zoned institutional like churches, medical facilities and resource centres.

The Coldest Night of the Year fundraiser is taking donations to keep the warming centre going and start a shelter, likely at a church, when it is expected to be made legal by the end of March.

Chris Gareau, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Middlesex Banner