Episode 18: Inn from the Cold: Supporting the Vulnerable with Nathaniel Miller

Episode 18

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In Canada, the need for adequate housing almost doubles with each passing year. And especially after COVID, this trend is likely to continue for the foreseeable future. But there are some non-cape-wearing heroes who are looking to provide care and support to families who are in need. Joining us today is Nathaniel Miller, the Director of Programmes at Inn from the Cold, a Calgary-based charity that helps desperate families regain their independence through adequate and affordable housing. We learn about Nathaniel’s role in the company and what the organization does, and then we take a look at the incredible impact that the charity has had on its community.

You’ll learn why dignity, kindness, and compassion are core values for Nathaniel and his team, how they end up providing parental advice, why the housing crisis is more nuanced than what appears at first glance, and the stigmas we need to let go of about people who are facing a housing crisis. Then, we take a closer look at the programmes Inn from the Cold offers, their financial breakdown and how they distribute funds, the magnitude of their influence in numbers, and what they do when they reach capacity at their facilities. Inn from the Cold’s every endeavour is to provide hope when all else seems lost and you’ll learn how you can get involved in their cause. They will again be our main charity recipient at the upcoming NATEFIT Calgary Exposed 5K race. Be sure to tune in for more details! 

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Introducing today’s guest, the Director of Programmes at Inn from the Cold, Nathaniel Miller. 
  • Our host explains the relationship between Inn from the Cold and NATEFIT.
  • Nathaniel’s role at Inn from the Cold, and what the organization does. 
  • What Inn from the Cold does to help families gain their independence back.  
  • The far-reaching and long-lasting impact that the charity has in its community.
  • Why it’s important for them to treat those in their care with dignity, kindness, and compassion.
  • How Inn from the Cold team members go about their work, and what they prioritize. 
  • Whether their work can also be seen as parental coaching and/or guidance.
  • How the housing crisis is more nuanced than you may think. 
  • Debunking certain stigmas and misconceptions about those who are facing a housing crisis.
  • What Inn from the Cold, as an emergency shelter, provides to people in need. 
  • A closer look at some of the programmes they offer.
  • Sponsorships, partnerships, and the financial structuring of Inn from the Cold. 
  • How Nathaniel and his team ensure that money is being spent only on what’s needed. 
  • The sheer impact of Inn from the Cold in numbers, and their insistence on providing hope.
  • What their capacity is and what they do when they reach their limit.
  • How you can get involved and support Inn from the Cold. 
  • Building excitement for the upcoming NATEFIT Calgary Exposed 5K race. 


“At Inn from the Cold, our vision is pretty straightforward: It’s a city or community where no child or family is homeless.” — @grimkin [0:01:38]

“There are the basic needs of having a shelter over your head and food in your belly. But as human beings, we need more than that. We need to feel connected, we need to feel accepted and included.” — @grimkin [0:04:40]

“Even if we’re trying to create the best shelter environment possible, it still is an emergency shelter. So, our goal is to get people out of the emergency shelter as quickly as possible, and even more, to try to prevent them from having to come here in the first place.” — @grimkin [0:07:21]

“There are so many different stories and different, often tragic and very sad stories of how a person ended up in [a housing crisis]. And more often not, it has nothing to do with decisions they’ve made. It’s situations of abuse, or hardships, or discrimination.” — @grimkin [0:11:59]

“When people lose hope, that’s when problems last and stay…As soon as someone feels a sense of efficacy, not only does that make them more resilient in the moment, but it also helps them be more motivated to start making changes to improve their situation.” — @grimkin [0:24:34]

Links Mentioned:

Nathaniel Miller on LinkedIn

Nathaniel Miller on Twitter

Inn from the Cold 

Calgary Homeless Foundation


Dr. Michael Ungar 

Dr. Gabor Maté 

Trellis Society 


Nathaniel Ernst

Nathaniel Ernst on LinkedIn


NATEFIT Calgary Exposed 5K

NATEFIT on Facebook

NATEFIT on Instagram

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Episode 18