Heather Gordon Murphy of the Downtown Business Improvement Association meets with volunteers from the Get the Point downtown clean-up team. Image provided

New Campbell River outreach program empowering volunteers

Get the Point offers peer outreach and support for people using substances and experiencing homelessness

A new Campbell River pilot project is empowering vulnerable community members while cleaning up neighbourhoods.

Get the Point volunteers clean up garbage and sharps around Campbell River while distributing items like sunscreen, hats, water and harm-reduction supplies to people experiencing homelessness.

Clean-ups take place three times a week and are organized by what the city calls “volunteer peers,” people who are currently experiencing homelessness, or who have in the past.

RELATED: Bringing hope to the overdose discussion in Campbell River

Some of the program’s volunteers live outside and have a desire to contribute to the project, a press release said.

“The program really helps because having people out there who were homeless or using and are now clean really gets others feeling like they can do it too,” said Ray Goodwin, a peer leader. “Everyone I talk to likes this program. It’s a lot easier to talk to someone if they aren’t just book-learned. If you know someone’s been there, they get it, you know?”

Peer volunteers receive training and an honorarium as part of the program. By the end of July, seven peer members had been part of the program with further interest from others, the press release said.

RELATED: Safe needle disposal boxes placed around Campbell River

The pilot project began in June and has targeted a number of areas for clean-ups including downtown, Campbellton, the Dogwood and Cedar area, Quinsam Heights, in green spaces like Nunns Creek Park as well as along the waterfront.

“It was great to meet the enthusiastic and excited group of people heading out to help clean up downtown Campbell River,” said Downtown BIA Chair Heather Gordon Murphy in a press release. “We look forward to seeing the results.”

The program is run by Kwakuitl District Council Health and was developed with input from the City and the RCMP. It received funding from the City, in partnership with Island Health and the Campbell River Community Action Team.

According to a press release, the program will continue to run into the fall when it will be evaluated to see if it continues.

RELATED: Parallel crises: How COVID-19 exacerbated B.C.’s drug overdose emergency

RELATED: B.C. paramedics responded to a record-breaking 2,700 overdose calls in July


@marissatiel
marissa.tiel@campbellrivermirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Campbell River

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

 

Volunteer Luka Kellerhals with peer leader Ray Goodwin. Image provided

Just Posted

Greg Janicki (left), owner of Dogwood Pet Mart rasied $410 this year for the Campbell River SPCA’s Loonies for Love fundraiser which he presented to Stephanie Arkwright, branch manager of the BCSPCA – Campbell River Community Animal Centre. Photo contributed
Pandemic doesn’t stop annual Loonies for Love SPCA fundraiser

Fundraising has been a bit challenging over the past year, but the… Continue reading

The intersection at Dogwood Street and 13th Avenue, next to the No. 1 Firehall, will see some improvements over the next six weeks or so, according to the city. Photo by Mike Davies/Campbell River Mirror
Intersection improvements coming to Dogwood and 13th Avenue

Expect delays for up to six weeks once work begins, city says

Oyster River fire has responded to 56 calls so far in 2021. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Department
Oyster River Fire averaged one call per day in busy February

One weekend saw 12 calls for service from crew

The students in the Timberline Musical Theatre program are rehearsing this year’s production, Once Upon a Mattress, three days per week after school in preparation for their upcoming virtual performances. Photo by Mike Davies/Campbell River Mirror
Timberline Musical Theatre hoping for last minute ticket surge

Popular annual run of shows costs $7,000-$8,000 to put on. They’ve sold $750 in tickets

NIC Practical Nursing instructor Barb McPherson (right) is pictured with student Rebecca Wood in 2018 in NIC’s SIM lab. NIC photo
Learn about Practical Nursing opportunities for Island students

Students interested in exploring a future in health care are invited to… Continue reading

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

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

Chief Justice Christopher Hinkson (Office of the Chief Justice)
Judge questions whether B.C.’s top doctor appreciated right to religious freedom

Lawyer for province says Dr. Henry has outlined the reasons for her orders publicly

The City of Duncan will implement a new pilot project targeting vandalism this spring. (File photo)
Graffiti trouble? Duncan will give you the brush and the paint to remove it

Initiative based on a successful project to protect Port Alberni from unwanted spray paint

A sample of guns seized at the Pacific Highway border crossing from the U.S. into B.C. in 2014. Guns smuggled from the U.S. are used in criminal activity, often associated with drug gangs. (Canada Border Service Agency)
B.C. moves to seize vehicles transporting illegal firearms

Bill bans sale of imitation or BB guns to young people

BC Housing minister David Eby is concerned that Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter will result in a “tent city” similar to this one in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / Black Press file)
‘Disappointed and baffled’ B.C. housing minister warns of tent city in Penticton

Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter could create tent city, says David Eby

This was the scene outside North Saanich’s Parkland Secondary School after an attempted but unsuccessful break-and-enter into the school torched an ATM inside of it. Sidney/North Saanich RCMP did not make any arrests and currently lack suspects as the investigation continues. Members of the public who may have witnessed something or possess other information can contact police at (250) 656-3931 or to Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS. (Submitted)
Money to burn: burglars torch North Saanich high school ATM

Police dogs searched the exterior and interior of the school after early morning break-and-enter

The first of Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s long-range maritime patrol aircraft—the Dash-8—becomes operational. (Photo supplied by PAL Aerospace)
Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s new De Havilland Dash-8-100 long-range surveillance air craft is capable of staying aloft for eight to 10 hours for a variety of missions up and down the B.C. coast. (Photo supplied by PAL Aerospace)
New plane will double DFO’s surveillance capacity in B.C.

The Dash-8 will fly out of Campbell River for enforcement, conservation missions

A recently published study out of UBC has found a link between life satisfaction levels and overall health. (Pixabay)
Satisfied with life? It’s likely you’re healthier for it: UBC study

UBC psychologists have found those more satisfied with their life have a 26% reduced risk of dying

Most Read