Alpha House is preparing its annual holiday fundraiser with hopes of being able to update the vehicles the Downtown Outreach Addictions Partnership teams use.
Executive director Kathy Christiansen said the organization is hoping to raise $50,000 this year to replace aging vehicles and maintain their overall fleet. She said the DOAP team often puts 100,000 kilometres of mileage on its vehicles annually and it is not uncommon to need to replace a vehicle each year.
“Our team has a 15-year history of providing safe transport care and support to individuals who are vulnerable and need support navigating the shelter system, housing, detox and other social services,” said Christiansen.
This year’s fundraiser will take place on Nov. 30, with a concert from local musician and actor Tom Jackson. Alpha House will also be hosting a silent auction with donated art pieces along with works created by their clients. The organization is also accepting donations for the auction.
Jackson said the concert, titled Stories, Songs & Santa Causes, will be about resilience, reinforcement, remembrance, reverence and celebration.
“This show is designed to get you out of your funk, and for you to help us save lives,” said Jackson. “Buy a ticket, save lives.”
Jackson has previously volunteered with the DOAP team.
Christiansen said the timing of the fundraiser, taking place as the weather in Calgary cools, also helps serve as a reminder that there are people in the city that need assistance as they live rough throughout the winter.
“There are people in the winter living outside and outreach is the work that mitigates injury. It is lifesaving,” said Christiansen. “It’s also a time of year when we try to add an extra van on the road particularly overnight.”