- Volunteers welcome sleepers and explain to them the code of conduct. Sleepers sign in, stating that they agree to the code of conduct. Volunteers than provide security with a registration list at 11:00 pm.
- Volunteers assist sleepers into comfort, and focus on building relationships. Refer to other services based on guest interest.
One of the women who accessed Just A Warm Sleep (JaWS) last year had been homeless for a while but had never slept at a shelter. When she came to Just a Warm Sleep for the first time she stood out, her clothes were pretty nice but mostly it was her agitation. She was very on edge, very tense, she always took the corner to sleep.
The first time she came I didn’t think she’d come back, but the next time it was my shift there she was. Her behaviour still agitated but less on edge, a little less tense.
Another volunteer asked her once why she had not gone to a shelter before ours- her words reminded me that you’re also providing her choice. She said, “I can’t go to that end of town or those places – he’s there.”
He is her abuser – and last year for a short time you were her protector. Faced with the realities of our winter and the recent freedom from an abusive relationship she would have had nowhere to sleep except that you helped. Coming to Just A Warm Sleep meant she could keep her job, she showered at her gym before work, and she gradually re-built her life and stopped needing to come to JaWS.