Rotary Shelter House Seeks New Engagement with Downtown Neighbourhood

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Feasting and Fundraising at the Rotary Shelter House Street Fair
Feasting and Fundraising at the Rotary Shelter House Street Fair

Shelter House Seeks More Community Engagement

THUNDER BAY – “Anything for Shelter House,” stated very soaked wet Executive Director Gary Mack as he stood in the dunk tank.

Shelter House hosted a street fair on Saturday. The event brought community groups together including Alpha Court, Regional Multicultural Youth Council, the Boys and Girls Club, Evergreen Neighbourhood, and Superior Points.

Rotary Shelter House seeks new engagement and better relationships with downtown Fort William
Rotary Shelter House seeks new engagement and better relationships with downtown Fort William

The goal of the event was engaging Shelter House with the wider community. Shelter House clients were helping make the event happen. That presents a very positive step forward for the homeless shelter, teaching and helping show the people staying there that they are capable and valuable people who are simply down on their luck at the moment.

Chasing Bubbles at the Clown Booth at Rotary Shelter House Street Fair
Chasing Bubbles at the Clown Booth at Rotary Shelter House Street Fair

Visitors to the event were able to enjoy a meal, youth had fun in the Boys and Girls Club Bouncy Castle, there was an obstacle course run by the RMYC, and face-painting and toy balloons for the kids.

Ice cream and grins galore at the Rotary Shelter House Street Fair.
Ice cream and grins galore at the Rotary Shelter House Street Fair.

The event presents a new outlook and a new direction under Executive Director Gary Mack. Engaging more with the neighbourhood is going to help the Shelter House become a part of the downtown, engaging the clients and residents with the people in the area.

Shelter House has also been undergoing some long overdue tidying up around the facility.

The recent addition of the new outdoor washroom has been welcomed.

There has been a general effort, both formally and informally to clean up around the Shelter House which makes a really positive difference in the facility.

Some of that work may have the impetus to engage and inspire some of the clients to accept help when needed and reach out to try new things.

NetNewsLedger will be doing a series of more in-depth reports on homelessness and poverty issues in Thunder Bay over the coming weeks.

Feasting and Fundraising at the Rotary Shelter House Street Fair
Feasting and Fundraising at the Rotary Shelter House Street Fair
Music was enjoyed by all at the Street Fair
Music was enjoyed by all at the Street Fair