A jam-packed musical lineup drew community members to the TransAlta Arts Barn yesterday to mark Homefest 2009.
The event, presented by the Edmonton Coalition on Housing and Homelessness, aimed to raise awareness while providing an afternoon of entertainment.
Shelters alone are not enough to correct the problems of homelessness, said Keith Harding, the chair of the coalition.
“If you didn’t have a place to stay, how would you feel about sleeping cheek to jowl with someone in the next bed? Yes, it’s a roof, but it’s not a home and it doesn’t provide security,” said Harding. “They aren’t very nice places.”
Many were attracted by the event’s folk and roots musicians, but the focus of the day was the plight of the homeless. “I understand that there are mentally ill people that choose to be out on the street, but there has got to be a some kind of housing situation for them, by the government, so that can have a safe place to be,” said Shannon Belik, who has previously stayed in shelters.