The Salvation Army is stepping up to protect the Comox Valley’s most vulnerable during the heatwave.

Community ministries director, Brent Hobden, says outreach teams will be out and about handing out bottled water, hats, and sunscreen. 

“We usually think of the Salvation Army in the wintertime providing beds, while the need is equally as great this summer,” he said. “Our friends who are living out in the streets, who are living in unsafe conditions, we need to care for them and so we want to thank the Salvation Army and we thank the community for stepping up and helping us to do that.”

He also thanked the City of Courtenay for offering a cooling centre at the Florence Filberg Centre.

Hobden says they’ll be at places like Lewis Park, the Comox Valley Marina wharf, and the Courtenay Airpark at various times over the next few days.

“If you’re in need of a bottle of water, or if you’re just looking for a quick chat, we’d really welcome you to come over, help yourself to a bottle of water, help yourself to some sunscreen, and (we) recognize that this is an opportunity to give back to our community.”

Captain Kevin Elsasser says with temperatures on the rise, many of the Salvation Army’s locations are taking action to ensure the health and safety of people in our communities.

“Many people living in crisis lack access to clean water, sunscreen and other essentials. It is our responsibility to ensure that they stay safe,” he added.

Elsasser said people living on the streets are vulnerable at the best of times, and that “when temperatures reach extreme levels, and people are left without the proper devices to deal with it, their lives are literally put at risk.”

You can help out by donating sunscreen, hats, and bottled water.