With daytime highs in the -30s and nighttime lows nearing -50 with the wind chill, residents experiencing vulnerability in our community may be struggling to stay warm. 

Melia Hayes, programs manager with the Helping Hands Society of Cochrane and area says despite what some think, there is a homeless population in our community but they're very unseen.

"It's something that we need to be aware of as the community of Cochrane that things are changing. There are people in need in our community that are quiet about it but don't have any place, don't have a warm place to be sleeping every single night." 

We want to encourage the town of Cochrane to look after and look out for its people. 

"We want to empower all of the businesses that are already open and already have a warm space inside to maybe make it a safe space for somebody who is cold who might not have a warm place to be to come in and just feel safe, feel like they're not loitering." 

Helping Hands

Hayes suggests businesses that are interested can place a sign on their window stating that they are a safe place to come in and warm up. 

"We don't have an official homeless shelter in Cochrane. This is a great way for the community to keep their eyes open and if you see someone who isn't dressed as warmly as they should be, invite them in to warm up."  

There are a number of resources available locally to aid those in need including Cochrane Family & Community Support Services, The Clothesline, Cochrane Home Treasures, the Cochrane Foodbank and the Cochrane Free Food Sheds.