Every Saturday evening, from the beginning of November to the end of March, we provide a safe, warm place to stay overnight, two full meals (dinner and breakfast) and acceptance and compassion. Through this program, we provide not only food and shelter but a welcome and fellowship.
Our volunteers come from many churches, organizations and walks of life. We, at Blythwood, simply wouldn’t be able to run the program without the help of others. In addition, Dixon Hall, a social services agency, provides us with security and educational support. We are grateful for the help and involvement of all who have a heart for the poor and destitute of our city.
If you would like to join our merry band of volunteers, please fill in the online application form giving us your information so that we can contact you about opportunities to serve. If you cannot volunteer but would like to donate to this work, please click here to donate.
As out guests would say, “God bless you.
This picture is a woodcut of a line of homeless men and women.
For more about the Out of the Cold Story. Please click here.
In 1995, Blythwood Road Baptist Church joined the city-wide Out of the Cold Program in response to the growing tragedy of homelessness in Toronto. Thousands live on the streets. You see them everywhere; sad, defeated, lonely and sick. They sleep in doorways, down alleyways, on rooftops and over heating grates. Covered in old newspapers and stinking blankets, they are despised and rejected, regarded as an embarrassment and a nuisance in a glittering, prosperous city. But Jesus loves them and died for them. And his command to us to care for them is inescapable.
On any given Saturday evening you will see guests sitting around chatting, playing cards and enjoying each other’s company. Some of our volunteers feel at ease mingling with our guests, listening and sharing their faith. Our guests may be destitute when it comes to material possessions (how much more destitute can you be than to have no roof over your head?) but some have a lively faith and they cling to it doggedly – it’s all they have. One woman offers to say grace and says it beautifully. A man’s eyes light up when he talks about Jesus. Many express their appreciation for the meal and follow it up with “God Bless.”