Helping families overcome the obstacles that can lead to a cycle of homelessness — that’s what we strive to do with every family that asks Inn from the Cold for help.
Strengthening families. Transforming lives.
Creating Hope. Achieving Stability.
25 Years Of Family
For over 25 years, Inn from the Cold has supported families in finding stability during times of crisis. We empower independence and foster resilience, guided by our belief that every child and family should have a safe and stable place to call home.
To help bring our vision to life we provide three main programs: homelessness prevention and diversion, emergency family shelter, and supportive housing. Trauma-informed and housing-first principles guide everything we do and we strive to adapt our programs to meet the unique needs of each family we serve.
Our Family Programs
On any given night, approximately 120 families will sleep under an Inn from the Cold roof through our shelter and housing programs, with many others receiving support through our prevention and diversion program.
At Inn from the Cold our three main programs include:
- Prevention & Diversion: This program helps to prevent families from experiencing the trauma and stress of homelessness. We work to stabilize a family’s situation so any financial, legal, health, or relationship challenges do not hinder the family from maintaining a safe, long-term home.
- Family Shelter: This program provides emergency and transitional shelter to families when they cannot stay in their existing homes and have nowhere else to turn. We provide families with a safe place to stay in a semi-private home-like environment with support to get back on the path to housing stability.
- Supportive Housing: Through community-based and affordable housing options, this program provides support for families facing homelessness. Through case management, we help families find and keep stable housing, access basic needs and financial support, develop life skills, and connect to other community resources and supports.
Family Support Services
For families accessing our main programs, we offer a range of holistic supports to strengthen families, create hope and achieve stability. Working with partner agencies, our family support team creates individualized plans to address each family’s specific needs for housing and social supports and help set them up for success on their journey to housing independence. Some of the supports we provide include child and youth programming, childcare, mental health and wellbeing support, Indigenous and cultural programming, employment and career counselling and legal aid.
A thriving community where every child and family has a safe and stable place to call home.
We empower independence and foster resilience for children and families by providing shelter, housing, and comprehensive supports that honour diverse cultural perspectives and unique life experiences.
We embody kindness, empathy, and a genuine commitment to supporting others.
We do what we say and we operate with transparency and integrity in our relationships and commitments.
We hold ourselves and others in high regard and our actions honour the rights, differences and dignity of all.
We believe that everyone belongs. We break down barriers and are committed to the journey of reconciliation, anti-racism and equity for all.
We are bold and use our voice to advocate for families and inspire collective action to breakdown systemic barriers and solve family homelessness.
We embrace creativity, continuous learning and collaboration to drive positive, equitable and impactful change.
We are all about people.
We recognize that people are at the heart of our mission, and their wellbeing is our utmost priority. Everyone, including the families, staff, volunteers and community, who come through the doors at The Inn is unique and deserving of compassion, respect, and dignity. We pledge to listen attentively, empathize deeply, and respond with unwavering dedication to their needs. We are committed to providing ethical and inclusive spaces, holistic support, and opportunities for self-empowerment. Our commitment to being people-centric guides every decision we make and ensures that those we work with are at the forefront of our efforts.
We take bold action towards reconciliation and equity.
We are deeply committed to the long journey of reconciliation. We will work alongside Indigenous peoples, to break down systemic barriers and dismantle oppressive structures that have inflicted harm upon Indigenous communities.
We recognize that Indigenous people, women, 2SLGBTQ+ individuals, and racialized communities are historically marginalized and continue to be discriminated against, underserved and overrepresented in homelessness and poverty. We are committed to actively listening to their needs and ensuring their voices are heard in addressing the systemic barriers that contribute to homelessness and poverty and will work tirelessly to create lasting equitable solutions.
Through ongoing learning, reflection, and action, we strive to break down barriers, promote reconciliation and equity, and create an inclusive and anti-racist environment where every person, regardless of their background, can thrive.
We are trauma-informed.
We are unwavering in our commitment to establish a safe, supportive, and trauma-sensitive environment. We acknowledge that trauma affects everyone, including our coworkers, the families we serve, and ourselves personally. We will actively strive to understand the individual needs and experiences of each person, treating them with empathy, respect, and dignity. We will pursue continuous education on trauma-informed practices and integrate this knowledge into our programs, services, and daily interactions. Our dedication to being trauma-informed extends to promoting healing, resilience, and empowerment for all those connected to our work.
Our Strategic Direction 2024 - 2027
Inn from the Cold undergoes a strategic planning cycle every three years, with annual reviews and adjustments as needed. The Board of Directors and Executive Team have adopted the following priorities as the framework in guiding the organizational strategy for Inn from the Cold for 2024 to 2027.
Our Strategic Plan for 2024 – 2027 prioritizes the focus of our actions, efforts and investments so that we can break the cycle of family homelessness and contribute to a thriving community where every child and family has a safe and stable place to call home.
1996/97 – The need
The Inn began out of a community concern for the growing number of people facing homelessness during the bitterly cold winter.
Solving the challenge
Volunteers from several local churches met to discuss how they could help.
In the beginning
St. Stephen’s Anglican Church opened its doors to provide shelter and hope to Calgary’s vulnerable families and others in need.
From 1998 to 2007
In the years following support grew with a number of inter-denominational churches, synagogues, mosques, community associations and organizations coming together to provide emergency shelter and resources for Calgarians experiencing homelessness.
A New Chapter
In October, a new chapter unfolded where Inn from the Cold opened Calgary’s first Emergency Family Shelter, located in the heart of the Beltline community.
From 2008 to 2020
Since then we have expanded our programs to offer holistic and supportive services that help a family wherever they are on their housing journey to get them back on their feet and into stable housing.
Inn from the Cold, partnering with HomeSpace Society, created Project Thrive; a campaign aimed at conversion of a vacant downtown office space into shelter and affordable housing for more than 180 Calgarians in need.
Inn from the Cold moves into their new headquarters.