The Buhler Centre at Siloam Mission is celebrating one year of more space and compassion towards those facing homelessness.
"The opening of the Buhler Centre came at just the right time for us. The biggest part of it was being able to have more space in our shelter as we were facing potentially reducing the number of people we could have because of COVID," says Luke Thiessen, the Communications Manager at Siloam Mission.
The centre had its grand opening on August 12, 2020 and is worth $19 million.
"It was one of those moments where you feel God's just really looking out for you because of the way that that timing worked. It allowed us to keep doing things that would have been really difficult in our old space."
While the space helped the ministry continue to serve their clients in many ways, certain aspects of their care had to be shut down regardless. This including their hygiene program and hair care services.
"The hygiene program was part of the Buhler Centre from the beginning but we couldn't open it right away. In the last few months, we've been able to open it and got it up and running to capacity," he says.
The program offers two services to their clients as well as for people not staying in the centre. It includes daytime showers and a daytime laundry program.
"It's a huge blessing for many. For folks who have pieces of clothing they would like the opportunity to wash and reuse, we're now able to do that. Both of those have been a popular addition to our programs."
After a few sewing machines were donated to the mission and volunteers offered their services, a mending program was also offered to clients.
"If something gets torn or they find a piece of clothing that doesn't fit quite right, we have volunteers who will mend or alter that as well. It's coming together to better serve our community and it's all about dignity."
One thing Siloam Mission always finds itself in need of is clean and new underwear and socks for their clients. People interested in donating those items can connect with the mission directly.