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St. Paul’s United Church opening its doors as a warming centre

St Paul’s United Church in Bancroft will be opening its doors to the community to use as an overnight warming centre.

Reverend Lynn Watson tells My Bancroft Now they will open tonight starting at 4 PM, with those seeking shelter being allowed to stay until 8:30 AM Thursday morning. The Church will be open again Thursday at 4. Watson says she’s not sure if they will open their doors again Friday.

“We have space for as many as need be,” Watson says when asked if there’s a maximum number of people the Church can hold.

She adds that decisions on if they open their doors will be based on the predicted temperature that day.

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Volunteers and supplies like beds and foods are in-place for the next two days, but Watson says they will work to determine over the next couple of days if anything extra is needed. “While we’re here, we’ll get a better sense of who is showing up and what they need,” she says. A steering committee meeting was held Tuesday at the Church to talk about affordable housing and homelessness in the area and they determined that running the warming centre that way would be best.

Watson says they have already gotten donations from the community. “I expect we’ll have more than we’ll actually need,” she says. Watson does add that they are looking for food donations. She says they would like things like fruit or vegetables so those seeking shelter can snack on them throughout the night. Watson also is asking for help getting them hot meals like oatmeal so they can eat something before they leave the next morning.

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