A map of communities that participated in homeless counts in 2018. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)

A map of communities that participated in homeless counts in 2018. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)

Port Alberni’s homeless count will take place April 7

Vancouver Island city has also been selected for a pilot extended count

A provincial homeless count in Port Alberni has been rescheduled to April 7, 2021.

In 2020, there were 16 homeless counts planned in communities across B.C. Although most municipalities were able to complete their counts in 2020, some communities—including Port Alberni—had to postpone their events due to the novel coronavirus pandemic and accompanying provincial health office restrictions.

READ MORE: Port Alberni homeless count postponed due to COVID-19

The last homeless count in Port Alberni took place in 2018 and recorded 147 people in the community experiencing homelessness. Of those 147 people, only 43 percent were “sheltered,” meaning the majority were living outside rather than staying in an emergency shelter.

Coordinator Marcie DeWitt told Port Alberni city council on March 8 that she believes the number of people experiencing homelessness in Port Alberni has increased since 2018.

“We know that there is a significant lack of affordable housing in most communities across B.C.,” said DeWitt. “I think that with the challenges of the past year, that has certainly been amplified. We are definitely anticipating a rise.”

The count will take place over 24 hours and will start with a night count on April 6, surveying people in shelters (including jails and hospitals). A daytime count will take place the next day, surveying people at dropsites—such as the Bread of Life warming centre and Salvation Army’s mobile kitchen truck.

READ MORE: Coordinated effort gives Port Alberni’s homeless and vulnerable a warm place to stay

Port Alberni has also been selected as a “pilot site” for an extended five-day count, which means organizers will be collecting additional surveys for five days following the 24-hour count.

“That will allow us to capture anybody who hasn’t been seen in that 24-hour period,” said DeWitt.

Unlike previous years, the 2021 homeless count will not include volunteers, due to COVID-19 restrictions.

“We will be relying on outreach workers in the region,” said DeWitt.

Some of these outreach workers include the RCMP, Port Alberni Shelter Society, Canadian Mental Health Association, Bread of Life, Kuu-us Crisis Line Society, the Salvation Army and the Port Alberni Friendship Centre.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

HomelessPort Alberni

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


A map of communities that participated in homeless counts in 2018. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)

A map of communities that participated in homeless counts in 2018. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)

Just Posted

A piece of artwork from Port Alberni artist Jim Sears. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
ARTS AROUND: Port Alberni artist shares watercolour images of the coast

Rollin Art Centre holding a garden clean-up on April 18

The Alberni Golf Club is located on Cherry Creek Road. FILE PHOTO
ALBERNI GOLF: Parhar picks up win in Partner with a Pro

Next Sunday, April 18 is a two man best ball

Two of the heritage buildings from McLean Mill National Historic Site that have been restored at the Port Alberni tourist attraction. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
McLean Mill application breaks new ground for ALC

Process just another ‘misstep’ by city, says critic

Coulson Aviation’s newest Chinook helicopter, N43CU, takes to the air above the Alberni Valley Regional Airport following a complete airframe conversion into a helitanker, April 8, 2021. (PHOTO COURTESY BILL MCLEOD)
Coulson Aviation’s newest helitanker takes flight

Converted Chinook helitanker off to U.S. for new paint job

Dave Cusson, Community Policing Manager with the City of Port Alberni, offers some tips for pedestrian safety in a Community Policing video. (SCREENSHOT)
City of Port Alberni on way to dubious pedestrian safety record

Pedestrian crashes a growing concern in Port Alberni

Demonstrators at the legislature on April 14 called on the province to decriminalize drug possession and provide widespread access to regulated safe supply across B.C. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)
Rally calls for decriminalization, safe supply on 5th anniversary of overdose emergency declaration

From 2016 to the end of February, 7,072 British Columbians died due to overdose

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Feb. 1, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps to 1,168 Wednesday, nearly 400 in hospital

Now 120 coronavirus patients in intensive care, six more deaths

Moss covered branches are seen in the Avatar Old Growth Forest near Port Renfrew on Vancouver Island, B.C. Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. blockades aimed at protecting old-growth forests reveal First Nation split

Two Pacheedaht chiefs say they’re ‘concerned about the increasing polarization over forestry activities’ in the territory

Richmond RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng said, in March, the force received a stand-out number of seven reports of incidents that appeared to have “racial undertones.” (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
‘Racially motivated’ incidents on the rise in B.C’s 4th largest city: police

Three incidents in Richmond are currently being invested as hate crimes, says RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng

Commercial trucks head south towards the Pacific Highway border crossing Wednesday (April 14, 2021). The union representing Canadian border officers wants its members to be included on the frontline priority list for the COVID-19 vaccine. (Aaron Hinks photo)
CBSA officers’ union calls for vaccine priority in B.C.

Border officers at ports including, YVR and land crossings should ‘not be left behind’

(Amandalina Letterio - Capital News)
Kelowna demonstrators show support for Vancouver Island logging activists

Two Kelowna men stood atop a pedestrian bridge on Harvey Avenue to raise awareness about old-growth forests

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read