TORONTO – January, 2018 – As the GTA continues to suffer under extreme arctic temperatures coupled with wind chill warnings spiraling the mercury to life threatening minus double digits, the Engage and Change Project Winter Survival initiative has extended a call to action for compassion to help provide basic survival needs to those living on the streets. For those less fortunate, a mere $25 donation per kit to Project Winter Survival translates into a lifeline of hope against the threat of death by exposure. “The growing plight of our city’s homeless goes from critical to deadly in extreme weather conditions,” said Jody Steinhauer, Project Winter Survival founder. “No one should die from the cold. Unfortunately, the 3000 kits that we provide can only offer marginal relief.” For more information or to make a donation, visit www.engageandchnage.org.
On Saturday, January 13, 2018, Engage and Change’s Project Winter Survival will package 3,000 survival kits for distribution to those in need via approximately 170 social service agencies, homeless shelters, and outreach providers situated throughout GTA and surrounding areas: 8:30 am, The Bargains Group Ltd., 890 Caledonia Rd, Toronto.
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To date, Project Winter Survival has received in excess of 12,500 requests for kits. The casualty of a bitter cold winter with little reprieve, the number of homeless deaths will top the already recorded 70 lives lost in 2017. With an average 1.8 deaths a week among this vulnerable community, Project Winter Survival anticipates a steady increase in demand. “Tragically the growing number of requests for kits far exceeds the total number of survival kits that we are able to fund through the generous support of our corporate and community partners,” said Steinhauer. “The call to action for more kits is NOW!”
Each kit contains such items as sleeping bags, clothing, food, and personal and health care items that often make a difference between life and death. Since it’s inception in 1999, Project Winter Survival has assembled and distributed more than 30,000 winter survival kits to GTA and surrounding area homeless.