The Salvation Army Bedford MacDonald House celebrates grand opening

by Maritime
Categories: News Archive

    Caption: Salvation Army officers and government officials participate in the ribbon-cutting ceremony to officially open Bedford MacDonald House on Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2013. From left to right, Captain Jamie Locke, Colonel Floyd Tidd, Major Doug Hefford, MLA Valerie E. Docherty, Mayor Clifford Lee, Major Jean Hefford and Capt. Elaine Locke.

    Today marked a significant occasion for The Salvation Army in Charlottetown with the opening of Bedford MacDonald House, the sole men’s shelter on Prince Edward Island.

    Colonel Floyd Tidd, Chief Secretary of The Salvation Army Canada and Bermuda Territory, was in Charlottetown today for the Grand Opening of The Salvation Army Bedford MacDonald House. The event drew a crowd of around 50 government officials and community partners, and featured speeches from Army officials and local politicians, including Mayor Clifford Lee and MLA Valerie E. Docherty.

    “Bedford MacDonald House represents a wonderful addition to our ministry,” said Captain Jamie Locke, Salvation Army Corps Officer in Charlottetown. “We are excited to offer this shelter and support to those in need in our community.”

    The seven-bed shelter came into the hands The Salvation Army after an Island businessman anonymously donated $200,000 to help cover repair and operational costs over the next five years. Bedford MacDonald House was closed for three months in 2012 for significant renovations, reopening under The Salvation Army’s name on Dec. 21, 2012.

    “We want to thank those who worked tirelessly in the past to provide this service,” said Major Douglas Hefford, Divisional Commander of The Salvation Army Maritime Division. “We build on their good work and we want to make Bedford MacDonald House a warm and safe place where those who need to come will find hope and dignity. Without the generosity and support of our communities, we would not be able to continue to provide these important services.”

    Since its reopening the shelter has proved an important service in the community, with occupancy averaging four men each night.

    “Our government recognizes that there are times when Island men need a warm and welcoming place to go to and we are pleased to be able to support the community effort to reopen Bedford MacDonald House,” said Docherty, who also serves as Minister of Community Services and Seniors. “I would like to congratulate the Salvation Army and the community partners whose hard work and dedication ensured this reopening became a reality.”

    Bedford MacDonald House, located at 184 Weymouth Street, was created in 2004 as a part of the National Homelessness Initiative and was previously run by a group representing several local churches. Anyone in need of emergency shelter may call Bedford MacDonald House at (902) 892-9242 or walk-in after 4 p.m. daily.

    Colonel Floyd Tidd, right, Chief Secretary for The Salvation Army Canada and Bermuda Territory, addresses the crowd gathered for the grand opening of Bedford MacDonald House.