A walk through a cold night in Maple Ridge can give a small taste of what it's like to live on the streets - but it's also an opportunity to raise money for the Caring Place.
On Feb. 23, Maple Ridge will take part in the Coldest Night of the Year, an event that's happening in 40 communities across the country.
Caring Place staff are hoping the fundraiser will raise $25,000, all of which will go toward local programs run by the Salvation Army that serve residents of Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows.
The family-friendly event is meant to give participants a sense of what it is like to survive through cold nights on the streets of Maple Ridge.
"This event aligns so well with what we do," said Amelia Norrie, public relations coordinator for the Caring Place.
As of last week, there were six teams signed up including Caring Place staff, two churches, and a group from the Ministry of Social Development.
The organizers would like to have 20 teams with about 120 walkers in total taking part and are therefore appealing to local agencies, groups, or businesses to sign up.
"One of the easiest ways for businesses to help us is to put a team in," Norrie said.
The Maple Ridge walk begins and ends at the Salvation Army Caring Place, 22188 Lougheed Hwy., where walkers will register, turn in the results of their fundraising efforts, and return at the end of the evening for a warm chili meal.
Walkers will gather at the Caring Place at 5 p.m. and then go on either a five-kilometre or 10-kilometre route.
There will be rest stops along the way where participants can warm up with toasty drinks.
The Caring Place provides 100,000 warm meals a year at their facility on 222nd Street and Lougheed Highway. The organization also has 15 transitional housing beds throughout the year and 15 cold wet weather beds from Nov. 1 to March 31, and run a transition home to stabilize homeless families.
They also support kids going back to school by providing school supplies.
Throughout the school year, the Caring Place gives out 30,000 nutritious bagged lunches to low-income students.
In the summer, more than 70 at-risk children and teens go to camp, thanks to the Caring Place.
To sign up for the Coldest Night of the Year, contact Amelia Norrie at 604-463-8296, ext. 106 or amelia. firstname.lastname@example.org.
COLDEST NIGHT OF THE YEAR SIGN UP
Here's how to be part of this local fundraising walk happening Saturday, Feb. 23 at 5 p.m.
Contact Salvation Army's Amelia Norrie at 604-463-8296 ext. 106 or email amelia. email@example.com.
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