Windsor's Water World Serves the Homeless during COVID-19 Pandemic

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Windsor's Water World has been reopened to provide space to serve the homeless during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Acting Manager of Homelessness and Housing Support Kelly Goz says public libraries and community centres usually provide Windsor's homeless population some shelter during the day.

With those options closed due to the pandemic, Goz says the city is partnering up with several organizations to make sure the homeless aren't left behind.

"Allowing them to come out of the elements, use washroom facilities and have a safe comfortable space where they can practice physical distancing as recommended by the health unit," she says.

Goz says preventing the spread of COVID-19 is a priority.

"We are screening for COVID-19 symptoms. The facility has enhanced cleaning protocols in place to ensure the safety of both the staff and the people that are coming in to use the facility," added Goz.

She says nearly 100 people have taken advantage of the day program since it started April 20.

"Folks weren't sure what we were doing there, but as people have started to understand the program that we're offering and that we're available, more people are coming through," she says.

The Canadian Mental Health Association, Family Services Windsor-Essex Street Outreach Team and the Community Partnership will be on hand providing services.

Those in need can drop in from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily and will be accommodated as long as space is available.

Water World is located at 400 Wyandotte St. W.