Best Activist Organization 2021 | Public Life

Best of Halifax

Best Activist Organization


Out of the Cold Community Association
7 Church Street, Dartmouth


Adsum House
2421 Brunswick Street


Halifax Mutual Aid Society


Ecology Action Centre
2705 Fern Lane
Inducted in 2017

Out of The Cold began seeing changes to its operating model as soon as the pandemic began. “There was a recognition that folks outside were a concern for public health” says executive director Michelle Malette. It meant a lot of changes, but for one, immediate funding was available. “That meant there was an opportunity to be inside and have a hotel model,” says Malette in a phone call with The Coast. “And the organization took some time over the summer and decided that we didn’t feel we could go back to being that overnight drop-in space.” Out of The Cold has struggled with finding a permanent space but is currently operating out of the Gray Arena in Dartmouth, serving up to 30 people at a time. “We’ve been going back and forth with the city and the province on trying to secure a space,” says Malette. “but we’re hoping in November. We’ll be moving into a full time model. And we’re very excited about that.” Malette says that OoTC has worked on connecting with the community through social media and Monday night street feeds at the old Spring Garden library, as well as “having conversations about housing and folks being unhoused.” She attributes the BOH recognition to that, as well as the increased attention the pandemic has drawn to the housing crisis. “We’re always a little bit under people’s radar,” she says, “But we’re so important, we’re so essential to the community, because we work to fill all these gaps for people that are really underserved.”

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