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New drop-in homeless centre proposed for downtown Grande Prairie

They’re still in the early stages, but there are plans in place to create a new drop-in facility for Grande Prairie’s street-involved and homeless community.

Jennifer Gossen is on the board of directors for the proposed Saint Lawrence Centre, which would be open during the afternoons downtown.

“Just a place for people to come and be warm, maybe check their email if they’re not having a place they can go check internet; having a place where they feel like they belong with people feeling they have a place to go.”

A recent homeless count in Grande Prairie found a 49 per cent increase in homelessness since 2008.

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While the city’s population increase is certainly a factor, Gossen argues that services have not increased accordingly.

The project will be looking for support from the community and businesses to finance the expected $130,000 annual operating budget.

The goal is to open by winter 2015.

A community information meeting is set for Tuesday night at the library starting at 7 p.m.

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