May 24, 2017 — Sandy Merriman House, Cool Aid’s emergency shelter for women, had an extensive interior renovation this last year and this week a transformation of the landscaping is being completed. The public is welcome to our Garden Reveal and Open House this Friday, May 26 from 1:30 to 4 pm, with the official garden opening by Mayor Lisa Helps at 2 pm. (Sandy Merriman House is located at 809 Burdette Avenue, across from the courthouse.)
“We feel very lucky to be able to provide our residents with the improved environment they so deserve,” said Sandy Merriman House Manager Christine O’Brien. “We are especially grateful that our beautiful new garden is a major gift from local businesses. We were first approached with the idea by Red Door Landscape Services and Heritage Masonry, who have led the landscaping team.”
“Red Door is pleased to have partnered with Sandy Merriman House to bring about a garden that will provide a calming sanctuary for its staff and clients,” said owner Logan Thomas. “In our eyes, the challenge to running a successful business is how to make an impact in the community on top of the services we deliver for our clients.”
“Every company has unique resources and we believe they should be put to use by actively leading volunteer initiatives,” said Gavin Chamberlain, owner of Heritage Masonry. “This project is the culmination of various individuals and businesses working together to produce a space that symbolizes elements of transition, peacefulness and shelter.”
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Christine O’Brien, 250-480-1408, cobrien@CoolAid.org
Homelessness and poverty are issues that touch many of us and impact more lives than you may realize. As the largest provider of services to the homeless and those at-risk of homelessness in Greater Victoria, the Victoria Cool Aid Society is a key player in the work to end homelessness. Cool Aid advocates for and provides emergency shelter, supportive housing, integrated healthcare, the Downtown Community Centre and other support services to the most marginalized and vulnerable individuals in the Capital Regional District. Each year, Cool Aid serves 10,000 adults and seniors facing multiple challenges of poverty, unemployment, mental health and substance use, chronic health issues, brain injury and aging.