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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. A physician is on site Thursday morning from 9:30am-12:30pm afternoons and a Foot Care Clinic is held the third Thursday of each month (please call the shelter 250.715.1132) to confirm the most up to date days and times). Warmland also has a volunteer and resident run garden.
The shelter is on the same property as the Cowichan Sobering and Assessment Centre; however, each operates independently of the other.
BC Housing allows the CMHA-CVB to initiate an ‘Extreme Weather Response Program’ during periods of winter weather which threatens the health and safety of homeless individuals. During these times, additional beds are made available. Typically, this program runs from November through March. Last year, the Extreme Weather Shelter is being run in partnership with Cowichan Tribes, providing an additional 30 beds at the Cowichan Tribes Gymnasium at 5574 River Road in Duncan. The extreme weather shelter was staffed from 8pm until 8am daily. Here people were provided access a warm bed with linens, as well as hot meals, warm showers, laundry and support services.
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…”
For more information about Warmland House Shelter, please take a few minutes to review the presentation prepared for our Open House on May 4, 2022 (also linked above).
Warmland House Shelter can be reached at 250.715.1132