New shelter opening near Cabot Square hopes to improve the lives of the homeless
MONTREAL - A new day shelter will open at the corner of Sainte-Catherine St. and Atwater Ave. in two weeks.
The shelter, called Resilience Montreal, will operate seven days a week, out of a former restaurant.
"Some people will come in, and they'll want a birth certificate, they'll need a hot shower, they'll need shoes, if there's been a trauma they'll need to talk to an intervention worker," said Sheila Woodhouse, executive director of Nazareth Community.
When the Open Door shelter relocated from beside Cabot Square to the corner of Milton St. and Park Ave. in 2018, clients didn't follow, outreach workers said. Since then, 14 people homeless people died around Cabot Square.
"When we see there's a lot of racial profiling, that people don't necessarily feel safe, there's nowhere to sleep, that there's nothing to eat, the stress increases," said Nakuset, the director of the Native women's shelter of Montreal.
The new shelter will accept people under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and staff will be trained to speak multiple languages.
"It's going to be trilingual," Woodhouse said. "We've got French and English, and we've got our first nations also."
If people on the street feel supported, they'll be willing to take steps to better their situations, but that's hard to do if they don't feel safe, Woodhouse said.
"It's very difficult for people who have not had security in their lives to think that their next step or their next help is not secure," she said.
The shelter is operating on a one year lease but will soon begin looking for a permanent home in the area.
With files from CTV Montreal's Matt Grillo