Out of the Cold Program
The St. Aidan’s Out of the Cold program began in the winter of 2006/2007 with a simple yet profound thought – no one should die in the cold because of lack of space or hospitality.
As Christians, the people of Saint Aidan’s felt called to open our doors and use the space we have. For twelve weeks, twelve homeless men and women were our guests. This year and next, Beach United Church on Wineva Avenue will host our Out of the Cold program while St Aidan’s prepares for renovations.
With the resources of the time and talents and gifts of people in our neighbourhood Out of the Cold offers hospitality. Some of the people who stay overnight are on the street by choice, others by circumstance. Whatever the reason, we offer them a safe, clean and hospitable place to call “home” one night a week. These men and women are our guests.
Our goal is to be with our homeless guests in their journey, as well as to advocate for an end to homelessness in our communities. We would love to be “out of business”. But until that time is here, we wish to be a presence and a welcoming place.
Our volunteers come from various backgrounds. Some are Christian, some are not. But they share the desire to make a difference in the lives of others. Through Out of the Cold, they can do just that.
The Out of the Cold (OOTC) begins its 13th season providing warmth, shelter, good food and hospitality for those in need on Monday nights and Tuesday mornings from November through April. This year and next it will be hosted in Beach United Church on Wineva Ave.
Volunteers are needed for a wide range of activities, both working with our guests and supporting the program.
Activities needed include assisting with set up, cooking, serving and hosting, kitchen duty, pick-up and delivery of donated goods.
Volunteers are divided into 4 teams, and serve 3 hours/month with their team, under the direction of their team leader. Duties are assigned and agreed when you sign up, and attend the orientation and training sessions.
All our volunteers who work in the program are trained in accordance with our requirements, including updates on a yearly basis; team leaders are required to get police checks. In general, we ask volunteers to serve 3 hours, once a month during the season as part of a team.
We sometimes have need for “spare” volunteers to assist us, so let us know if you wish to serve in that capacity!
Also, if your family, community group or workplace is interested in cooking and serving dinner for about 65 guests, please let us know.