The Blue House, which offered free meals, clothing, a needle exchange and referrals to other services, has been in operation for two years.
"It was started as a project to address the needs of street involved women in the Drouillard Road area," said Lady Laforet, executive director of the Welcome Centre Shelter for Women. "We never quite hit the mark with it."
The building itself, a blue house near the corner of Richmond Street, is owned by the AIDS Committee of Windsor. The AIDS Committee came up with the idea of starting a pilot program for women there Jordy Nelson Super Bowl 49 Jersey and approached the Welcome Centre about helping to staff it, Laforet said.
The Blue House has been open two afternoons a week, for a total of six hours weekly. It cost about $10,000 a year to operate.
Laforet said the program duplicated services offered by other agencies in the Drouillard area. But those services were supposed to be the draw for women living vulnerable lifestyles. "We were hoping it would be a door opener to other ways of living."
It really wasn't, Laforet said. For example, off the 20 to 30 women who used the program each month, only a couple needed referrals to the central housing registry.
Staff found that sex trade workers and other vulnerable women would come in, take some clothing or ask for a meal in a takeout container and not take in all the program had to offer.
Joy, a woman who used to visit the Blue House regularly, said she and others she would socialize with there are disappointed it is closing.
"There's nothing we can do about it, but it's a shame."
She admitted she is not one of the women the program was intended to help, but felt welcome there. She especially liked the guest speakers who would educate the women on topics like health and legal issues.
"A lot of good people came in there. I learned a lot," Joy said.