Coldest Night of the Year 2021

It’s an event that brings a lot of warmth to many people who really need it. This year the need is greater than ever here in Brandon. During a regular year “The Coldest Night of the Year” is a covid-safe, family-friendly walk to raise money for charities serving people experiencing homelessness, hurt, and hunger. Funds raised here in Brandon will be allocated to the Samaritan House Safe and Warm Shelter. Shannon Saltarelli Fundraising and Communications Specialist for the Samaritan House says, “Normally the event is a gathering of people that get out as a group and walk 2 – 5 kilometers, there’s usually open ceremonies and a wrap up with hot chili on a bun served. It’s greats fun and a neat group event. Obviously, things will be changed this time around due to COVID regulations.” While some communities in Canada will walk in person as part of groups, this year the Brandon contingent of this nationwide initiative will be a virtual walk. But let it be known, another main objective of this event is to let it be known that there is a place for everyone on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021. “The components are still the same. It is first and foremost a fundraiser,” said Saltarelli.

Together with thousands of Canadians across the country, funds will be raised to support and serve people and families experiencing homelessness, hurt, and hunger in our community. The Samaritan House in Brandon is leading this community’s efforts for Coldest Night of The Year. We believe it is important to respond to the needs of the organizations and agencies that assist those within our community who are vulnerable and in need of a helping hand and support system. We invite you to pass this message along to your contacts, friends, peers, and family,” says Saltarelli.

There is no registration fee, just fundraise and do your walk on Feb. 20th as an individual, with your family, or with your team if able. Saltarelli says, “When you register online you’ll receive your own landing page which is quite robust that provides tools and graphics you can use to send out links to your page which will let more people know about your efforts and the event.”

On February, 20th they are still encouraging people to get out and walk. “Normally we would provide a designated route of 2 or 5 km and the idea of doing that is to give people a tiny window of what homeless people experience, just being exposed to the elements and not having a place like even a car to run to and warm-up or going home to warm up with some hot chocolate, those are luxuries that many of us just sort of take for granted. The idea of being exposed to the elements and putting yourself in a homeless person’s shoes is still an important element with this initiative and we still really encourage people who sign up to do this,” says Saltarelli. Once people do this they are asked to post it on social media to say they have completed their walk.

In the last five years, the event has raised between $24,000.00 – $38,000.00. This year’s goal is $25,000 which will cover some costs of the planned expansion of the safe and warm shelter. As of February 1st, they were just over 20% of the way to reaching that goal.

This year more than ever we need your support! Please consider registering today or if you would rather just donate, please head to Coldest Night of the Year 2021 (e2rm.com) to donate to our Samaritan House team (Samaritans In the House).

For more information on the event visit cnoy.org or google Coldest Night of the Year Brandon. For local sponsorship information or help on registering you can reach Shannon Saltarelli at pr@samaritanhouse.net.