Services and Supports

This page provides a short-list of the emergency shelter, nutrition and hygiene services available to residents of Nanaimo. For a full list of low and no-cost support services available in the city of Nanaimo, please refer to the Surviving in Nanaimo guide.

Please note that in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of local providers are currently limited in the services provided. Additionally, some overnight shelters are operating at reduced capacity and/or not receiving new guests. Due to the rapidly changing context, we are not able to provide updated information for every service provider, so please check directly with them to confirm whether services have been affected.

To find information on community, health and social service providers, please go to:


   DECEMBER 23, 2020

Unitarian Shelter  (595 Townsite Road) has 24 beds and is full most evenings. They are open 6 pm to 7 am, 7 days a week. To check bed availability please call 250-754-3720 or arrive after 6 pm. You can email 

St Peters Shelter (301 Machleary Street) is open until March 31, 2021 8:30 pm - 7 am, 7 days a week. They have 24 beds, use has varied, typically between 8-16 in use each night with some vacancies. Guests are asked to enter from the back laneway. You can leave a message at 250-753-3570 or email 

Emergency Shelters

RDN Regional Housing Resource List:

Salvation Army New Hope Centre
(19 Nicol Street) 250-714-1142
Has 24 emergency shelter beds available for men. 

Island Crisis Care Society Samaritan House 
(285 Prideaux Street) and operating as an Emergency Resource Centre 250-753-1474
20 beds women, 16 beds men.

Emergency Shelter First Unitarian Fellowship of Nanaimo
(595 Townsite Road)  250-754-3720
Has 24 emergency shelter beds for men and women.

St Peters Winter Shelter - operated by Unitarian Fellowship of Nanaimo
(301 Machleary Street) 250-754-3720 
Has 24 shelter beds for men and women, winter months only (November to March).

Friendship Lelum Youth Safe House
Co-ed, year-round shelter for 'at-risk youth' between 12-18 years.

Regional District of Nanaimo (RDN) shelter and housing support information, click the links below:

Emergency Food Providers

  • Salvation Army New Hope Centre
    (19 Nicol Street) 250-714-1142 / 250-753-0810
    Meal program open for lunch and dinner. Bread & baked   goods available during meal times while supplies last.
    Lunch is served from 12:00 to 1:00 pm. Supper is served from 4:00 to 5:30 pm ($2.00 for hot meals). 
  •  7-10  Breakfast Club
    (285 Prideaux Street in the Community Service Building -   entrance off Fitzwilliam St) 250- 714-0917
    Provides a hot nutritious breakfast, homemade soup, plus a   brown bag lunch to go that is served by community volunteers to those in need during the hours of 7:00 AM to 10:00 AM. All meals are offered at no charge.
  • Stone Soup / Wisteria Community Association
    (155 Victoria Road)  250-591-6443
    Provides a brown bag lunch to go that is served by community volunteers to those in need during the hours of 5:30 PM to 9:30 PM. All meals are offered at no charge.
  • Loaves and Fishes Community Food Bank
    (1009 Farquhar Street) 250-754-8347
    List of satellite food banks available at

Hygiene Services

  • Shower Program - City of Nanaimo/First Unitarian Shelter
    Caledonia Park (110 Wall Street)
    Free showers available Monday to Friday, 7 am to 12 pm
    Towels and toiletries are supplied. Due to COVID-19 protocols, there may be a longer wait, please be patient. 
  • Portable Toilets 
    Several portable toilets are located throughout Nanaimo for the convenience of residents, visitors and homeless individuals.To view a map of the available facilities, click here.
  • Public Washrooms and water is available 7 days a week with varied opening/closing hours. 

* Please note these are the general open/closing times until March 31, 2021. They could vary based on maintenance/cleaning/weather or special event.

Last updated: January 15, 2021

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