WINDSOR, ONT. -- The Windsor Residence for Young Men may have to suspend operations within weeks due to lack of funding.

Executive director Gregory Goulin issued a statement on Monday, saying it’s “because our basic program is not being sufficiently funded.” He said the WRYM needs about $50,000.

“While the Windsor Residence for Young Men has been the beneficiary of most generous funding to cope with Coronavirus, funding for our basic program has dried up,” said Goulin.

Goulin said WRYM has been COVID-free while continuing to transition youth from homelessness. He said coping with the unforeseen consequences of COVID funding efforts seems bizarre.

“We have been provided with a generous reserve dedicated to staff overtime and isolation pay should we have to isolate with “our guys”, but not the funding to initially provide their basic staff wages,” added Goulin.

Funding for “The Kids Next Door” work program, about $10,000, was eliminated early on at Stage 1 of the pandemic, when they could not provide social distancing for four guys and their supervisor in a vehicle transporting them to the “job site.”

For the same reason, Goulin said they had to restrict their Youth Independence Program (YIP) to residents. Like the schools, the classroom had to be closed to all non-resident youth.

“Now that our community has finally moved to Stage 3 and the schools are opening, we have no funding, about $30,000, to run YIP,” said Goulin. “We could not apply to fund a program earlier which would have been prohibited from operation with no idea of when the prohibition might be lifted.”

WRYM has been offered non-perishable food from the Miracle Food Drive, but Goulin said they still must spend about $1,000 each month on fresh dairy and meat and they need to pay staff.

“The bottom line is that WRYM needs about $50,000 quick to give our staff job security and “our guys” a home,” said Goulin.