News & Stories


COVID-19 vaccination clinics in our shelters

April 23, 2021

Working alongside other homeless serving agencies in Calgary, the Calgary Drop-In Centre (the DI) has continued to advocate for the prioritization of those we serve in receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. Today, we are excited to announce details of a short-term pilot program offering COVID-19 vaccination to our shelter stayers.

Working in collaboration with Alberta Health Services, The Alex, and other partners in the sector, we are piloting vaccination clinics in our main and satellite shelters starting April 21, 2021. Supported by The Alex as well as our internal health services team, folks staying at the DI can get their vaccine in shelter, where they are at, on a first-come, first-served basis, as supplies allow. As of April 23, we are excited to announce that 29 clients have been vaccinated on site.

For The Alex, this vaccine rollout is another great example of how strong collaboration can result in adaptive, smart solutions. We know that many of our community have likely been eligible for the vaccine through different roll-out stages, but may have struggled to access the program for many reasons. Meeting people where they are at ensures we get as many people vaccinated as possible, and allows us to also provide education on the benefits of vaccination. Our entire community is strengthened when our most vulnerable are supported.” – Joy Bowen-Eyre, CEO, The Alex

Vaccines are our way out of this. We have learned a lot from this pandemic and now know that the more people we have vaccinated more quickly, the better position we will be in in the long run to get over this hump of COVID-19 and into the recovery phase. We have overcome many hurdles this past year and now, the Calgary Drop-In Centre is grateful to have its clients and employees eligible to be vaccinated. We will continue to work alongside public health and all our partners in the system of care to provide the best services possible to our community’s most vulnerable people.” – Sandra Clarkson, Executive Director, Calgary Drop-In Centre

While the specifics surrounding full-scale rollout of vaccination in shelter have yet to be confirmed, it is our hope that we are able to use pilot programs such as these as the first step in offering vaccination to our clients, helping to reduce the barriers they may face in getting a vaccine. Additional details will be made available when confirmed.

Since March 2020, the DI has been on the frontline of the pandemic and we have been doing everything we can to prevent the spread, including increased cleaning and mandatory PPE usage. Vaccinations are the next step and our way out of this pandemic.

For more information, contact:

Chris Huestis
Manager, Marketing and Communications
Calgary Drop-In Centre

Johanna Schwartz
Communications Manager
The Alex

About the Alex

At the Alex we see the whole story of health. For almost 50 years we have served a community facing complex health challenges, including poverty, trauma, financial and housing instability, food insecurity, and a need for social and community inclusion. We tackle tough health and social issues and walk alongside people from crisis to wellness and from challenge to change. Learn more about how you can support us at

About the Calgary Drop-In Centre

The Calgary Drop-In Centre (the DI) is more than an emergency shelter. We provide essential care as well as health services, employment training, and housing supports to people who need help. Our programs and services connect people to permanent housing that meets their individual needs. For more information on how to volunteer, donate or otherwise make an impact, visit