a man on the street stock image (supplied by: pixabay)
The Smithers homeless population has moved to a Wellness camp just outside of the town with help from the Town of Smithers and social service agencies.
According to Smithers Community Services Executive Director Cathryn Olmstead, the camp is for the homeless population to have an area to self-isolate during the COVID-19 pandemic.
She added the different social service organizations worked together and approached the town to come up with a solution.
The camp included services such as electricity, food, and tents by different donors across Smithers.
Olmstead says the SCSA has heard the group’s appreciation of the new camp.
“We don’t really do it so that people express their appreciation but, by doing that it makes me hopeful that it’s a positive solution,” she said.
The camp is not open and there are specific criteria the individuals have to follow before being accepted into the camp.
Olmstead said it is for people who are absolutely homeless and have nowhere else to go.
“It’s not for people who have less than stellar housing and think this is better, that’s absolutely not an option, it’s only for a very specific group of people many of whom have already been identified in the community,” she said.
Smithers Deputy Mayor Gladys Atrill called the camp an amazing gathering of generosity.
“It was also realizing that in this current situation, where if the COVID-19 virus made its way into a group of people they’re not only at risk, other people are at risk and I think what we saw was a real recognition of that,” she said.
The SCSA is also encouraging Smithers residents to not check out the camp and to be respectful of other people’s space and privacy.