Once again NeighbourLink is shining a spotlight on the challenges facing Chatham-Kent’s homeless population through its sixth annual Coldest Night of the Year event, which will be held Saturday, February 26.
The event consists of a five-kilometre fundraising walk beginning at the former St. Agnes School on Croydon Street in Chatham. Walkers will gather at 4 p.m. but once again this year NeighbourLink is offering a "Virtual" option: in which walkers can choose to participate on Walk Day but can walk on any day and route of their choosing during February.
The walk has a $50,000 goal and is the largest fundraiser of the year for NeighbourLink, a group supported by a network of local churches that works together to respond to needs in the community.
Alan Baker, Chatham-Kent NeighbourLink Network Coordinator, said more than 130 walkers have registered and pledges have surpassed $33,000. “We are still accepting donations and participants,” he said. “More than 100 people have said they will attend in person, an option we didn’t have last year.”
Mayor Darrin Canniff said groups such as NeighbourLink are part of the fabric of the community. “We care about each other in Chatham-Kent,” he said. “Wherever there is a need, someone steps in to fill it.”
The mayor was joined by councillors Karen Kirkwood-Whyte and Marjorie Crew was as well as a number of municipal staff who support the event each year.
For information on how to become involved, visit the Coldest Night of the Year website.
NeighbourLink is a registered Canadian charity, a Christian ministry that helps those in need across Chatham-Kent.