Calgary, AB,

Calgary lights up orange in recognition of shelter, agency staff amid COVID-19

This evening, the Calgary Tower, and other participating facilities and installations in and near downtown, will light up in orange in honour of the hard work and dedication of Calgary shelter and agency staff helping prevent the spread of COVID-19 among the homeless population.

In order to comply with physical distancing guidelines, over 400 homeless Calgarians have been relocated to temporary shelter locations or permanent housing. This includes families and individual adults who are now in a range of settings including hotels, community facilities and their own residences in the community.

“Since the onset of the pandemic, we have seen tremendous efforts put forward from groups and organizations all over Calgary to help prevent the spread of COVID-19,” says Chief Tom Sampson of the Calgary Emergency Management Agency. “The staff at our local shelters and other agency partners are working with a truly unique set of challenges and I would like to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for the work they are doing to keep one of Calgary’s most vulnerable populations safe.”

“When the pandemic was declared and most Calgarians started to think about how to keep themselves and their families safe, Calgary’s shelter and agency staff did what they’ve always done – stepped up to help those who needed the support,” says Mayor Naheed Nenshi. “Because of that selfless dedication, to this point, we’ve avoided the enormous public health risk of an outbreak within our vulnerable population. Tonight’s small gesture across the city is just a token of the enormous thanks all of us owe the heroes working in our shelters and agencies.”

The following landmarks will be lit up orange this evening as a ‘thank you’ to our shelter and agency staff:

  • Arts Commons
  • Calgary TELUS Convention Centre
  • Calgary Tower
  • First Street, Victoria Park
  • Fort Calgary (in red)
  • Glenbow
  • Heritage Park
  • International Avenue
  • Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium
  • Reconciliation Bridge
  • Telus Spark
  • Olympic Plaza (stage lights in green and blue; mall lights in orange)

Staff in the following homeless shelters, agencies and private and public sector partners are being recognized:

  • Alberta Health Services
  • Alpha House
  • Arts Commons
  • Calgary Homeless Foundation
  • Calgary Hotel Association
  • Calgary TELUS Convention Centre
  • Community & Social Services, Government of Alberta
  • CUPS
  • Drop-In Centre
  • First Alliance Church
  • Inn from the Cold
  • The Alex
  • The Mustard Seed

Visit to view a collection of stories illustrating the important work being done by these, and other organizations amid the COVID-19 pandemic.