Islanders raise funds for addictions centre

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Some of the people wgho participated Saturday night in the Coldest Night of the Year Walk in Charlottetown set off from Central Christian Church.

Hundreds of Islanders rallied together Saturday to raise some cold hard cash for those in the province fighting addictions.

The Coldest Night of the Year fundraiser was held at the Central Christian Church on Kent Street, where walkers donned iconic gray toques and began 5 km and 10 km treks through the city.

It was the second year the walk was held on P.E.I. with all funds going towards Harvest House P.E.I., a private faith-based residential addictions recovery program.

John Bennett, minister director for Harvest House P.E.I., said prior to the walk that it looked like the fundraiser would reach its goal of raising $50,000 in the province.

“It looks like we’ll be very close, I’m sure we’ll equal the $43,000 (we raised last year) and I’m not sure if we’ll make it to $50,000 but we’ll be in that range,” he said.

The walk is part of a national effort that began in Ontario and is now in its fourth year.

The event is meant to give people an idea of what it’s like to live outside with nowhere warm or comfortable to go at night.

As of Saturday evening, more than $2.1 million had been raised nationally.

Last year’s P.E.I. fundraiser led to the opening of the addictions centre on P.E.I.

Harvest House P.E.I. has arms in Charlottetown, Solomon’s Porch, as well as Jars of Clay in Summerside.

“That’s up and running now. The money we raised here will go towards supporting and sustaining that. It’s a major thing on P.E.I. because we’ve been looking for something like that for a long time in the province.”

Community sponsors for the event included Starbucks, CIOG.FM, and Central Christian Church.

Individuals can still donate to the event by going to and clicking on the Charlottetown, P.E.I. link.

Organizations: Harvest House, Central Christian Church, Jars of Clay Starbucks

Geographic location: Kent Street, Charlottetown, Ontario Summerside

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Recent comments

  • Quiet Observer
    February 24, 2014 - 09:08

    Essentially, this is a service that the Provincial Government should be providing. I think they should match dollar for dollar whatever is raised from volunteers.

    • Miffed tax payer
      February 24, 2014 - 11:34

      I whole heartedly agree on your comment about the government should help out with this problem and match dollar for dollar !!!

  • Excellent idea
    February 23, 2014 - 22:12

    Good idea to start , but we also pay taxes as well and with the amount of drug related offences and crimes I think it is time those individuals charged with direct charges relating to drugs should also have to pay a fine of restitution for addiction separate from victims of crime . That way they also funding towards their own use of facility or those that sale of drugs promoted addiction . This would include misuse of percription drugs as well .

    • blah
      February 24, 2014 - 12:10

      Given that you recognize the large cost economically and socially, why are you not instead asking, no, DEMANDING that the government act responsibly and in keeping with well documented facts fleshed out through extensive study? Namely, that every dollar spent on rehab, methadone maintenance and etc saves twenty dollars in criminal and social costs? If anyone at all left on this Island truly believes that this government is doing anything to solve this problem, they are sorely mistaken. Currie seems to have placed Matters in front of this political and societal trainwreck and stopped commenting. If you contact methadone maintenance clinics or rehab centers in places outside of this province, such as new Brunswick, the difference is staggering. Here, you essentially get the idea that they are laughing at you for thinking you can get any help, citing two week wait times for rehab and six month wait times to even see anyone about the possibility of methadone maintenance, forget actually getting on maintenance in six months. Over there? Get a referral, assessed, bloodwork and you can be receiving help in under two days. Our province is so far behind in health care and our government so horrendously inept that what we take as normal here is pretty much third world by comparison to places as close as an hour away. Will any Island government ever truly be held accountable for anything they do or do not do? I would like to believe so, but I just can't see it. We seem to hate ourselves.

  • Harvest House PEI
    February 23, 2014 - 19:38

    What a great day for the Community to gather and Celebrate around the Coldest Night of the Year- Harvest House PEI!! A huge shout out to all who gave of their time and resources to make this happen for PEI! Thanks to all Donors, Walkers, Volunteers, Sponsors, Team Captains, Planning Committee! We are so grateful for each one of you and it means a lot to have your support going forward with PEI's first long-term addictions recovery center! We are truly blessed!