(Image from the Victoria Native Friendship Centre Facebook page)

Homelessness is an issue that every city faces, and Victoria is no exception.

Starting in October, an overnight shelter will be available every night of the week. Previously, this shelter was only used if an extreme weather alert had been issued.

The Victoria Native Friendship Centre, a 25-bedroom shelter located on 231 Regina Ave. will be open on October 1, 2018, until March 31, 2019, from 9 p.m. to 7:30 a.m.

The shelter will provide meals, showers, access to laundry, and a shuttle service.

B.C. Housing is working with other non-profits to open other winter shelters as quickly as possible.

Open to residents of the recent tent cities

The opening of the Regina Ave. shelter is partly in response to the Regina Park and Rudd Park tent cities.

The Regina Park campsite, also known as Camp Namegans, was vacated on Thursday, September 13, in compliance with a B.C. Supreme Court order.

Some residents of the Regina Park campsite then moved to Rudd Park, calling the new site Namegans Nation.

A rally was later held by camp activists on the following Friday. “Homes not hate,” was echoed by the roughly 100 people who marched in the rally.

The shelter, hosted by the Victoria Native Friendship Centre, is welcoming residents of Camp Namegans and Namegans Nation.

Further steps in place

The Province has partnered with 22 municipalities to build over 2,000 modular homes that will have access to 24/7 services.

An additional 2,500 supportive homes will be delivered to the province via the Building BC: Supportive Housing Fund.

Here on the island, the District of Saanich has been given funding through the program.