CHANGE IN VENUE: ALL EVENTS WILL TAKE PLACE AT The Space.
7 October 2013
Safe N Sound is carrying out a pledge campaign to raise much needed money to support our work with the homeless and impoverished in our community. We are in the community collecting pledges, and inviting others to join our cause. Should you choose to pledge, you are entitled to receive a tax receipt. If you are unable to make a pledge at this time, we still invite you to learn more about our organization, and the many ways you can help us in our work with the homeless and impoverished.
How the Pledge Campaign works:
Participants can pick up an application and pledge sheet by attending at the Space, by calling the numbers listed below, or by emailing email@example.com.;
Pledges can be collected until Saturday October 19th, at which time participants are asked to hand in their pledge sheets to Safe N Sound.
On the evening of October 18th, 2013, people are invited to camp out anywhere it is legally possible to do so, including your own back yards, porch steps, or front lawns;
The Space at 310 8th St. East in Owen Sound will stay open all through the evening of October 18th;
Breakfast will be served at the Space at 7:00 AM – 9:00 AM on the Saturday the 19th.
At 10:00 AM on the 19th, there will be a public address at the Band Stand
Should you at any time have any questions about this campaign, or us as an organization, please do not hesitate to call any of these numbers:
Safe N Sound-519-470-7233, emergency-519-470-2222, or Richard Suchow at 519-373-3335.
Consistently high demand has the Owen Sound Salvation Army Food Bank hoping for a strong Thanksgiving Food Drive.
“We are certainly at the lowest point we have ever seen our food shelves at,” said Alice Wannan, the Owen Sound Salvation Army’s community and family services co-ordinator. “Primarily that is because numbers did not drop during the summer. Normally we see a decline in the number of families that use the food bank during the summer and we did not experience that at all.”
The Salvation Army branch is kicking off its 27th annual Thanksgiving Food Drive on Friday. The drive runs until Oct. 14, when organizers hope to collect about 28,000 pounds of food.
Wannan said the shelves were virtually bare prior to this past Saturday when a stuff the ambulance event was held at Zehrs where about 1,500 pounds of food and over $400 in cash donations was collected.
In Owen Sound in the month of August, the Salvation Army assisted 667 individuals with food , of which 168 were under the age of 18, which works out to almost $38,000 worth of food given to families during the month.
“It’s a staggering number when you think of that,” said Wannan. “As a Salvation Army we would not be able to do that without the community support.”
Wannan said the need is slightly higher than last year, but it is the consistency of the need that is depleting the Salvation Army’s supplies.
“Normally we have different times of the year where it seems to let up and we have a bit of a lull in the numbers where it kind of lets us build up our food supplies,” said Wannan. “We just have not seen that. Numbers consistently seem to be from 650 to where we have had up to 745 individuals in a month.”
Wannan attributes the need to the higher cost of living people are experiencing.
“The rents. the heats and hydros, the cost of kids going to school, are what we are consistently hearing from families are impacting their abilities to put money away for food,” said Wannan.
The organization depends on the Thanksgiving Food Drive to get its shelved stocked for the busy holiday season and carries the food bank through most of the year.
“The Thanksgiving Food Drive is the only food drive the Salvation Army runs throughout the year,” said Wannan.
This year marks the first year where the Salvation Army will not be distributing paper bags through the newspaper. This year the organization has opted to make people aware of the food drive drive through a pamphlet that will be included in the weekly store flyer package.
“We wanted to make that transition to be a little more environmentally friendly,” said Wannan. “We have been sending out approximately 13,000 bags every year. We get a good number of those back, but we certainly understand there are a lot that aren’t coming back and are probably going to the landfill site.”
Wannan said the pamphlets are also more cost effective and they can be kept and posted on peoples’ fridge as a reminder. The pamphlet includes details about where food can be dropped off and the items most needed, including peanut butter, Kraft Dinner, juice, canned beans and pasta and soup. The pamphlets are also being distributed by local churches and schools.
“By the beginning of our Thanksgiving campaign we hope to have about 20,000 of them out,” said Wannan. “We are hoping to get the word out to more people in the community, we just won’t be using the paper bags.”
People can drop off food at local grocery stores, businesses and churches during the duration of the food drive. On Oct. 10 and 11 there will be a Thrifty truck in the Zehrs parking lot where food can be dropped off. The truck will be in the Bayshore Broadcasting parking lot on Oct. 12.
Just hours before Owen Sound’s bus terminal is to be closed for good, people plan to gather outside of the building to call on city council to keep it open.
The United Way of Bruce Grey decided to organize a “Don’t Kill the Terminal” rally, for Monday at 1 p.m., after being asked by many individuals and community organizations “to do something” about the impending closure, said executive director Francesca Dobbyn.
“We want to draw attention to this. We don’t want the quiet silence in the community to be misunderstood as acceptance or an endorsement of what city council has decided to do with the terminal,” she said in an interview.
The city is planning to permanently close the depot at 6:30 p.m. Monday. Council made the decision as a way to reduce the cost of the transit system.
Even though the building will be closed, the terminal property will still be used as a transfer point and bus stop until the city transitions from a four-route to a new three-route system, which is expected to happen this spring.
Coun. Peter Lemon served notice at a council meeting Sept. 23 that he will seek to bring back for discussion a staff report, which outlines the cost to keep the terminal building open for another six months, in hopes that council will reconsider its decision to simply “note and file” the document.
Dobbyn said the United Way, which does advocacy work in the community, has many concerns about terminal’s closure.
Riders, including “our most vulnerable consumers,” use the building for its washroom facilities, to seek shelter from the cold and rain and to receive assistance and information about the transit system, she said.
“The proposed concept of local small business owners providing tickets and information is well meaning, but few stores will be open early enough for those using the system in the morning, to provide shelter,” she said in a news release.
Bus drivers also rely on the terminal for its washrooms. It’s also a place for drivers to gather in the event of an emergency, she said.
Dobbyn said she would like the city to keep the terminal open at least over winter to provide time for a “community conversation” about what to do after it closes.
“We feel there is an out-of-the-box solution that can be realized through community engagement and consultation. The city will still have to heat, clean, plow and maintain the property, so the operating costs are not significant in savings,” she said.
A report by operations director Brad McRoberts said it would cost about $57,600 over the six-month “transition period” from a four-route to a three-route system to have the terminal open and a staff person stationed there during regular transit operating hours. Costs to clean the building and its washrooms each day as well as for utilities and a telephone line would also be covered.
The cost to keep the terminal open, without staffing the building, would be about $27,000 for six months. The Owen Sound Police Service strongly cautioned the city to not leave the building “unstaffed,” noting past “issues with illegal activity” there, McRoberts’ report said. City staff did not recommend that option.
On behalf of the South West LHIN, Southwest Ontario Aboriginal Health Access Centre (SOAHAC) and Aboriginal/First Nation Community Partners, people are invited to the Grand Opening of the new SOAHAC Site in Owen Sound and the health outreach team to the Grey/Bruce/Owen Sound area.