Drumheller Salvation Army opens new shelter for victims of domestic violence

Ribbon cutting ceremony for Drumhelelr Salvation Army new domestic violence shelter
by Alberta

On March 1, The Salvation Army Drumheller held a ribbon-cutting celebration for the grand opening of the new temporary domestic violence shelter, Colton’s Place.

It has been a project in the works since 2019, and with the support of Big Country Anti-Violence, Drumheller RCMP, the Town of Drumheller, Drumheller Housing Administration, and the Drumheller Rotary Club Association. The new shelter has finally opened its doors.

At the beginning of COVID-19, Captain Ben Lippers of The Salvation Army submitted a grant for housing to help those in need. This led to hotels offering rooms to house individuals who needed a place to stay whether they were living on the streets or getting evicted from their homes.

“We’ve been utilizing hotels for what we’re doing right now,” said Captain Lippers. “Since May we’ve put over 60 people in a hotel and of that, 50% have been because of domestic violence.”

The town of Drumheller provided The Salvation Army an apartment unit to house those who are fleeing a domestic violence situation. The stay at this apartment is temporary as victims are transitioned to either a shelter or a low-income apartment.

“This is a place for women to catch a breath, that’s why it’s unique,” explains Captain Lippers. “It’s really a stabilization unit.”

The Salvation Army provides these women with a case management worker to help figure out their next steps and a suitable place for them. They help connect women to resources that will allow them to focus on their healing, overcome trauma, and move them towards a life of economic stability and independence.

Colton’s Place is named in memory of three-year-old Colton Saunders, who was tragically killed in 2008 due to family violence.

The Salvation Army’s Family Violence Intervention Coordinator in Drumheller can be reached at 403-823-2215.