Downtown Mission And Tim Hortons Team Up To Help The Homeless

The Downtown Mission and Tim Hortons are going double double on their efforts to help the homeless.

They have announced a partnership that will provide Tim Hortons locations throughout the city with phone numbers for the Mission's Day and Night Programs and an emergency number.

If an urgent situation is identified, the mission will pick up a person needing a warm place and shuttle them to the mission.

The partnership developed after a homeless drop-in centre in Windsor refused to kick people out at night during the frigid cold temperatures late last week which violated fire safety regulations.

Mission Executive Director Ron Dunn says it was a natural fit because Tim Hortons is easily accessible and everywhere.

"This is an opportunity for anybody who maybe experiencing homelessness and is stuck during the extreme weather days, they can go to any Tim Hortons and ask for help and Tim Hortons has been provided with three phone numbers."

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The Downtown Mission Food Bank and Clothing Centre at 875 Ouellette Ave., November 2016 (Photo by AM800's Teresinha Medeiros)

Dunn says Tim Hortons was eager to help.

"To have each of their staff members become champions for those experiencing homelessness, I can't say enough about that. We can't be everywhere," says Dunn.

He says the mission always had room for people to get out of the cold but for some people, it was a transportation issue on how to get from one location to another.

"They immediately responded with a yes," says Dunn. "This had to go through corporate offices and then to every single franchise owner in the area and 100% absolutely how can we help."

The mission is looking for different avenues of funding to try and provide future consistent transportation for people who are homeless and are looking for a shelter.