Through a homelessness outreach program started during the pandemic, the Sur-Del Easy Does It Club has helped to get some people off the street and others into recovery.
SurreyCares Community Foundation recently provided a $9,600 grant, through the Emergency Community Support Fund, to the Sur-Del Easy Does It Club (EDIC) to help support the club’s homelessness outreach program.
The funding, according to a release from SurreyCares, will be used to help open the club’s cafe in the mornings to the homeless community. But the program also includes the use of the bathroom and access to a phone or computer.
The club, which is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping those dealin with addiction, started the program on Dec. 1, 2020 and it initially ran until March 31, said Robert W., a member of the club. Last names aren’t being used in the article due to the Easy Does It Club’s practices of anonymity.
It was in November that Robert said he found out he could apply for a grant to reopen the facility for the community.
“I thought of the street people.”
The club had to shut its doors to the public during the first wave of the pandemic due to safety concerns.
Melody C., the outreach program manager, said she first opened the doors to the street people on Dec. 1 and since then, five people have gone into recovery and a woman and her son have managed to find housing.
“They tell you their whole life stories. It’s amazing to me the resilience of some of these people. The amount of seniors is really startling. A lot of the clients who were coming here weren’t addicts or anything, but just have mental health concerns or seniors that can’t find housing.”
Melody said opening the club just allows people to recoup.
“You see them come in and after the go to the bathroom and clean, it’s like night and day, the difference in them,” she said. “Some people come in to make a phone call. How do you look for a job or use the computer? A lot of them use the computer to look for housing or just chat with family.”
EDIC president Mark D. said the funding will help to pay some of the members’ “minimum wages when opening the EDIC cafe is the mornings to help street people during the pandemic.”