New Brunswick

Safe Harbour teen homeless shelter opens in Saint John

A new emergency teen homeless shelter and transition home in Saint John is holding an open house tonight.

10-bed shelter will provide emergency and transitional housing for youth, aged 16-24

An emergency teen homeless shelter and transition home is opening this week in Saint John.

The Safe Harbour youth homeless shelter will have 10 beds available to both male and female youth, aged 16 to 24. (Submitted)
After years of planning and fundraising, Safe Harbour, a 10-bed facility in the city’s south end, will welcome its first resident on Tuesday.

"It’s really overwhelming but so exciting," said residential director Lindsay Gallagher. "I can’t wait to open our doors," she said.

The shelter, located on Broad Street, is holding an open house for the public today from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m.

The two-storey facility has an open-concept layout with a living room, games room, kitchen, dining room, library, art room, quiet room and girls' bedrooms on the main floor. Upstairs is the boys' area with a TV room, said Gallagher.

The kitchen is just one of several common areas in the new Safe Harbour youth homeless shelter in Saint John. There is also a games room, a quiet room and a library. (submitted)
It sits on the former site of St. James Anglican Church, which was donated by the Anglican diocese, after sitting vacant for seven years.

The shelter will house both male and female youth, aged 16 to 24.

Residents can stay for short-term emergencies, or up to six months, when needing time to transition to permanent housing, said Gallagher.

Although many of the homeless youth in the city are not currently living on the street, but rather staying at adult shelters, or "couch surfing" with friends, "Some are staying in unsafe situations," she said.

Two staff will be on-site 24 hours a day for two shifts.

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