Rock Bay Landing: One-Year Open House Tuesday

November 7, 2011 – Victoria Cool Aid Society celebrates one-year of service at Rock Bay Landing emergency shelter and transitional housing with an Open House on Tuesday, November 8, from 12:30 to 3 pm, at 535 Ellice Street.

Tours will be available for the media and the public.

Some of Cool Aid’s accomplishments during Rock Bay Landing’s first year of service include:

  • 109,000 nutritious meals served during the year
  • An average of 2,530 shelter beds filled each month with an occupancy rate > 99% over the last six months
  • 10 families sheltered
  • 82 people housed in transitional units
  • 97 people helped to find permanent homes
  • 2,635 people assisted with additional services (e.g. income/employment: 132, advocacy: 130, counselling/emotional support: 237, detox/treatment: 175, ID: 70, bus tickets: 2,600)

The Victoria Cool Aid Society has been building hope, lives and community in the Capital Region for over 40 years, since 1968, through a wide range of programs including emergency shelter, transitional and supported housing, community health and dental services, mental health and employment services, and the Downtown Community Centre. Cool Aid specializes in services for adults who are homeless or in need of help. For more information visit or call 250-383-1977.

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Information and Tour Bookings:

Don McTavish, Manager of Shelters



Backgrounder on Rock Bay Landing

Rock Bay Landing, Victoria’s largest emergency shelter, evolved from the original Cool Aid hostel in 1968 and replaces the old Streetlink shelter.

Rock Bay provides the very basic of needs to Victoria’s downtown, street-entrenched populations: shelter, food and hygiene. It is a link to other Cool Aid services such as the Community Health Centre and housing, and other services like Our Place, Detox Services and Pacifica Housing.

“The Rock” is not only a shelter, but also provides meals, drop in services, laundry facilities, storage, computers, activities and links to other resources. Rock Bay Landing helps over 40 people each day deal with issues of physical and mental health, substance abuse, life skills, crisis intervention and housing needs. 23 units of transitional housing and support staff are also available on site to help our residents make the next steps into market housing and re-integration with the larger community.

The new, purpose-built Rock Bay Landing facility offers many improvements over Streetlink including:

  • 84 permanent shelter beds; up from 80 at Streetlink.
  • 23 new units of transitional housing.
  • Two units of family shelter– the first in the Capital Region, managed in partnership with the Burnside Gorge Community Centre.
  • Expanded space for 40 shelter mats during overflow conditions.
  • A card lock system and lockers for each resident allows almost 24-hour access to their rooms. (At Streetlink, room access was restricted to overnight hours only.)
  • A large exterior courtyard, accessed through the building, for residents and drop-in visitors. (No courtyard was available at Streetlink.)
  • A day storage service available for non-residents and carts are accommodated on site.
  • Washrooms, showers, laundry, training workshops, computer access, kitchen and dining facilities (greatly improved over Streetlink).
  • Additional rooms allow more opportunities for group work, counselling and client meetings and services.
  • A community policing office is located in the shelter.
  • Rock Bay Landing is built to the highest green standards (LEED GOLD) including solar panels on the roof, heat recovery, superior insulation and much more.
  • Pets are welcomed at The Rock.
  • There are many more volunteer opportunities for community members.