Community of Hope Blog | Red Door Family Shelter

Community of Hope Blog

Update on our New Shelter

By Wendy Bray

The unfortunate delays due to COVID-19 are behind us. Signing the lease with the City of Toronto and receiving the keys to our new shelter in late September has meant that construction to implement the final leaseholder improvements is underway. A tentative move-in date is set for early 2021.

Many windows and the use of bright colours in common areas will create a positive and vibrant environment for families to heal and move forward in their lives. A private outdoor play area will give children the opportunity for connection and therapeutic recreation.

colour swatches and renderings of our new shelter

Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic

By Kathryn Hill

Since mid-March, the COVID-19 pandemic has slowed work at the site of our new family shelter. However, we are ready to complete the leaseholder improvements and fit-out of the new shelter as soon as possible. Our goal is to create a safe, warm environment that supports the dignity of future residents. In the meantime, we continue to provide emergency shelter for families at our interim facility.  Although these are uncertain times, we anticipate working at the site of our new family shelter soon.

a happy looking family standing in front of a building

A Safe Haven

By Kathryn Hill

CBC News has been highlighting the crisis of intimate partner violence in Canada, including the overwhelming demand for beds in VAW (Violence Against Women) shelters. Last year, 84 of the 200 families at the Red Door came to us escaping intimate partner violence. Safety is paramount and so our new family shelter will have a modern entry system equivalent to that required of a VAW shelter. In addition, we continue to operate our 50-bed VAW shelter which is currently occupied by 16 moms and 30 kids, and 4 single women.

A mom and young daughter embracing

Changing the World Together

By Kathryn Hill
Margaret Mead once said: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” At our various public meetings to keep our family shelter open and in the east end community, hundreds of people came to show their support (see picture from 2014). We continue to be buoyed up by your support on the journey towards opening our new family shelter.
a crowd of people at  town hall meeting

Space Planning at the New Shelter

By Kathryn Hill

“A home is security and comfort, a sense of belonging. Everyone deserves a place of refuge.”     Red Door Supporter

Space planning is the process of analyzing how space in structures and rooms will be used. For Red Door Shelter, our space planning process includes not only ensuring that the space built by Harhay Construction is used efficiently, but that homeless families in need of shelter will feel that they living are in a modern, safe sanctuary where their dignity is maintained. Only then can it be called a Community of Hope.

a colourful park bench with a Red Door sign on it

New Year, New Community (of Hope)

Happy New Year! 2020 will be a year to remember. In the coming months we’ll be opening our new, purpose-built family shelter. It is thanks to your help that we have reached this milestone 6 years after we first shared the news that our original family shelter was at risk of closure. To all of you who signed our petition, attended our community meetings, emailed politicians and donated to our Community of Hope campaign, thank you for making a difference.

For more information:

little red cardboard houses with the text "Save our Shelter"