Warmland House Shelter is located at 2579 Lewis Street. It opened in 2010 as a purpose-built, entry-level community facility. The shelter was designed to be a gateway to stable housing and integrated, client focused support services to adult (19+) men and women who are coping with a variety of challenges such as mental illness, addiction and chronic health conditions.
Warmland House is a three-story residential facility with 30 shelter beds, 24 transitional apartments, a common-room, kitchen, dining room and offices. Breakfast and dinner are served daily in the dining room. Laundry and shower facilities are also provided. Weekly nurse practitioners are on site Wednesday afternoons, a Foot Clinic is held the third Tuesday of each month and a physician is on site Friday mornings. Warmland also has a volunteer and resident run garden.
BC Housing allows the CMHA-CVB to initiate an ‘Extreme Weather Response Program’ at Warmland during periods of winter weather which threaten the health and safety of homeless individuals. During these times, an additional 15 beds (mats on the floor in the lobby) are made available. Typically, this program runs from November through March.
The shelter is on the same property as the Cowichan Sobering and Assessment Centre; however, each operates independently of the other.
MOVING FORWARD PROGRAM:
CMHA-CVB Warmland House provides transitional housing opportunities and not landlord/tenancy rental agreements. Opportunities to secure transitional housing are based on commitment to a personal growth plan (Moving Forward Plan) developed in tandem with staff. Stable housing is part of any moving forward plan and part of an individual’s participation in Warmland’s (Moving Forward Plan Initiative).
Moving Forward Plans are part of the larger ‘Moving Forward Program Initiative’ that supports individual clients who choose to improve their personal living conditions. With the support of outside community agencies, health services, housing and in-house client support services, prospective residents are encouraged to commit to a personalized plan of personal growth and improvement.
The plan itself is regularly reviewed, modified and adapted by staff and other outside professionals (with client input) in an effort to aid individuals in keeping on track with their commitment to an overall change in their life circumstance. Clients and residents that leave Warmland always have the opportunity to return in future and to meet with staff and access programs and services available through Warmland Shelter & Outreach Program.
Warmland is more than a building; it is a refuge in a world for some who have nowhere else to turn. Warmland is a place to feel safe, to take stock, rebuild, a place to call home - a community. And that is what makes Warmland different. It’s not an institution, a set of rules and policies. It is not fear based, it is welcoming. There are miracles taking place at Warmland every day.
Above all else, Warmland is about people who care. Warmland is the team that daily brings their passion, compassion and empathy to bear upon this place. They give a “hand-up” and bring hope every single day to some of the most vulnerable in the Cowichan Valley. They save lives and give hope everyday…they just don’t realize it. In the words of one resident “…this place saved my life…”
Warmland House Shelter can be reached at 250.715.1132