As part of the National Addictions Awareness Week, six members of the Lower Kootenay Band spent the night in Millennium Park on Friday, with the temperature dropping to -12 C.
“In some areas of the country, that’s a warm night,” said Chief Jason Louie.
Army cadets loaned Arctic sleeping bags to the event, which raised awareness of homelessness, which may be a result of addictions.
“A lot of the individuals had lives where they had a home, vehicles and a stable job,” said Louie. “We wanted to empathize with them, and experience what they experience on a daily and nightly basis.”
For at least one member of the group, the exercise had its desired effect.
“As someone who hasn’t experienced sleeping in the cold, or even without a roof over my head, I felt what it was like to be in the cold, to feel the hard surface I slept on,” said Lisa Three Feathers. “It has opened my eyes a lot. I pray for all those who are without shelter to be looked after and watched over and not to have to go through this much longer. I feel for what homeless people go through everyday. This was just one night, but one that I hope brings awareness to all.”