The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s Community Homeless Assistance Team (CHAT) is now a permanent program, thanks to donations by several local businesses and non-profit organizations.
The program launched a permanent space Monday and announced the team has grown from one person to three people. The three outreach workers help those who are vulnerable by linking them with individually and culturally relevant services.
“We know that the cycle of despair often felt by our city’s homeless can only be addressed through sustained social intervention,” said Stefano Grande, Executive Director of the Downtown BIZ. “Our goal is to forge and help evolve stronger relationships, helping people who are homeless or at risk transition into healthier lives, through continued outreach. The BIZ strongly feels that by addressing the visible presence of homelessness, by helping people comprehensively off the street and into a better place, we will be able to break down barriers and create a more tolerant city.”
The project received $152,000 in funding and in-kind donations, everything from cash to a vehicle to parkas for the outreach workers, and includes $60,000 in funding from the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s membership fees.