EDITORIAL: November a time to spread some warmth

Today marks the beginning of November and with that comes, if not the official start of winter, the arrival of a trend toward colder weather.

Already, overnight temperatures have dropped to (or slightly below) the freezing mark in Metro Vancouver, and two emergency shelters in Surrey opened their doors a few nights earlier than expected to ensure that people in search of a warm bed could find one.

Typically, the extreme weather bed program isn’t launched in Surrey or White Rock until Nov. 1, but Mother Nature sometimes has other ideas.

At this time of year, frigid nights are often the price we pay for the pleasure a stretch of sunny days brings.

When the winter rain arrives in earnest, it will certainly be no more comfortable for people without proper shelter to bed down for the night.

With that in mind, maybe now is a good time for those of us who do go home each day to a cozy house or condo, a fridge filled with food and a warm, dry bed, to think about what we can do to help.

In the backs of many closets, in boxes and drawers, many of us have been storing warm winter clothing, socks, heavy coats and waterproof footwear that hasn’t seen the light of day for several winters – and isn’t likely to ever make it back into the rotation.

So, why not dig them out, clean out the pockets, check for holes or excessive wear-and-tear and ensure that they are clean enough that you would feel comfortable putting them on.

Then go online or get on the phone and find out which shelters or organizations in your area are in need of winter clothing.

It’s a small gesture – and one that costs very little – but knowing that someone’s life has been made more comfortable because of it should make you feel warm all over.

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