With a Polar Vortex system expected to drive temperatures below zero in the coming days the Cowichan Valley’s Extreme Weather Emergency Shelter for the homeless will likely be busy.

The Provincial Government recently announced funding for the extra shelter spaces, which will be available from now until March 31st; whenever the weather gets nasty.

James Tousignant is the Manager at Warmland House in Duncan.

Salt Spring Island and Southern Gulf Islands Community Services will also have an additional 20 spaces available during extreme weather conditions.

Based on the forecast, shelter workers will usually determine early in the day whether the extra beds are needed, and get the word out to RCMP, local churches and the media.