A few different groups are coming together in Swift Current to tackle the homelessness problem in the city.

The idea is to form a Swift Current and Area Ministerial Homelessness Committee. Anyone who would like to participate in this is invited to come out to an information night on January 12 at 7 p.m. at the Full Gospel Church, 72 4th Avenue, in Swift Current. The night will discuss and share information on homelessness/houselessness in the city of Swift Current. 

The individual behind the idea is Pastor David Clarke. He has been working to build trust amongst the homeless population, handing out water bottles. When he noticed that there didn't seem to be much in the way of an official committee, he decided to ask Swift Current City Council Member, Leanne Tuntland-Wiebe, for help in organizing interested parties.

"We've kind of been working on it for the last year," said Tuntland-Wiebe. "Concerns were brought to me as a council person from Pastor Dave Clarke. He had been to a couple of agencies in town and was trying to find out what to do to help the homeless because part of his outreach is driving the streets of Swift Current and he had identified a few homeless people."

With Tuntland-Wiebe working as a facilitator, they reached out to the local RCMP, Canadian Mental Health Association, Social Services, the Salvation Army and other groups that had experience with helping and dealing with homelessness.

There has been discussion on how to provide care when it's crucial during the winter months. While Swift Current doesn't have a massive homeless population, those that are experiencing it during the -50 C conditions that occur this time of year, are very much in danger of freezing. 

Looking at different programs in other communities has been a big inspiration for them. While the ideas are great, they are as of yet unable to enact any of their own.

"I've been talking to coordinators in Yorkton to find out how they run their 'Love Bus'," said Tuntland-Wiebe. "Short story is, we're falling short. There's no funding from anybody. Anyone who has these programs set up in smaller communities have no funding from the city, the province or the federal government. So it's all come coming from fundraising from within the community."

The idea of setting up a bus that has supplies and food to share like the 'Love Bus' in Yorkton, for now, is still in the planning phase. 

Right now, they are planning to reach out to the community in Swift Current for donations to help the homeless. Things like jackets, blankets, or food are all important for those surviving on their own. 

For now, Pastor Clarke has been using a van to go around, handing out supplies and building up a relationship with the homeless. Building trust so that when their program and committee do get up and rolling, they will be able to readily trust and accept the help coming to them.