Anawim volunteers and residents during their annual Christmas Tree Fundraiser earlier this month - Photo courtesy of Anawim House.

Anawim volunteers and residents during their annual Christmas Tree Fundraiser earlier this month - Photo courtesy of Anawim House.

Victoria non-profit to open new supportive women’s residency this spring

Anawim House looks forward to the grand opening of their new “Women’s House” this spring

To look at it, you wouldn’t know the “big blue house” on the corner at 973 Caledonia Ave. was anything special. Immaculately well kept, with its tidy yard and well-maintained exterior, it is, in fact, anything but ordinary, and the services they provide our community are extraordinary!

Anawim House first opened in 1991 as a full service, drop-in support home for those experiencing poverty and homelessness. Offering hot meals, showers, laundry and companionship to those in need, what makes them unique is their “family style” approach in how they help those who seek shelter within their walls.

The Big Blue House, Anawim provides renewed hope for those in need. - Photo courtesy of Anawim House

The Big Blue House, Anawim provides renewed hope for those in need. - Photo courtesy of Anawim House

Practising a family model of table dinners and “together we can” attitude, the people who are welcomed into Anawim House can attest to how successful and life-changing this approach can be.

“I can’t imagine a better place to call home and to find a family that accepts me unconditionally,” said one new resident, three days into their stay at Anawim.

In 1994 Anawim began offering long-term shelter to seven male residents and since then Anawim has continued to work as a full-time, drop-in service as well as providing a male residents’ program.

Residents are provided mental health support, employment counselling, education and everything else they could need to overcome their obstacles and stay involved in all aspects of “family life” at Anawim House, including providing meal services for the drop-in program.

“Our model of Service, Family, Healthy Living and Compassion is something we’re very proud of and we have witnessed its success firsthand,” says Sara Ross-Gill, a coordinator at Anawim.

This spring, the team at Anawim House and The Anawim Companions Society is excited to open new doors and a new chapter in the Anawim legacy.

After the generous donation of her home from an anonymous female donor in 2019, for the purpose of a woman’s home – Anawim’s Women’s House will open its doors in the Spring of 2023. Much like their men’s house, the Anawim Women’s house will offer a family model of recovery in a substance-free environment. The need for such a house – a place where women can live in safety while they recover their lives, reconnect with loved ones and build a hopeful future – has never been greater than it is today.

If you’d like to be a part of the amazing work Anawim House and The Anawim Companion Society continues to do in Greater Victoria you can do so by donating either by cheque or online here. If you are interested in donating your time, you can find more information about volunteering with Anawim here on their website.

Together WE can be a part of the solution.

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