This year’s annual Coldest Night of the Year fundraiser is going virtual.
Under normal circumstances, the event – which has been held in White Rock and hosted by Sources Community Resource Centres since 2014 – would feature hundreds of people, all bundled up against the cold, walking near the city’s waterfront as way to raise funds and awareness for Sources’ homelessness prevention services and rent bank program.
Rather than one night, this year’s virtual event is scheduled for a three-day period, Friday, Feb. 19 through to Sunday, Feb. 21. Anytime during that three-day period, participants are encouraged to complete either a two- or five-km walk close to home and “with their household or safe bubble, following the recommendations of our Provincial Health Officer and local health authorities.”
Organizers have created a Facebook group (www.facebook.com/groups/sourcescnoy2021) where participants in this year’s event can share fundraising tips, walk-route ideas, event information and “photos to inspire one another.”
A virtual opening ceremony Friday, as well as closing ceremony Sunday, will also be hosted on the Facebook page.
“We will miss connecting with everyone in-person but we are looking on the bright side – going virtual has its advantages,” said event planner Abby Gemino in a news release.
“This option allows anyone, anywhere, to walk and raise funds for Sources – beyond residents of South Surrey-White Rock. Our team is working hard to create ways for participants to enjoy a fun, shared experience.”
Sources is also fundraising for its Comfort and Care During COVID-19 Response Fund – the organization has set a goal of raising $100,000 for the fund – and donations through Coldest Night will be “applied strategically” to programs and services that are in the most need, including food banks, housing and advocacy services (including the aforementioned homelessness prevention and rent bank programs) as well as volunteer services and counselling services.
Last year’s Coldest Night event saw more than 400 people take part, and raised more than $115,000.
To register for this year’s event or to donate, visit cnoy.org/whiterock