KITCHENER -- The Region of Waterloo and its community partners are hoping to open a temporary emergency shelter this week in an effort to protect the region's most vulnerable.

As part of its pandemic response, the region says in a news release that the A.R. Kaufman YMCA in Kitchener will be modified to serve as the shelter.

When it opens, it will help accommodate people who are accessing the overflow space at St. Mark's, and will include amenities like showers.

The facility is also supposed to have capacity to serve overflow from other shelters once the region gets more staffing in place.

According to the news release, the region also hopes that it can expand the space into a daytime drop-in space.

People who access the shelter will be regularly screened for COVID-19, the region says. If anyone shows symptoms, they'll be brought to a fully-staff isolation space.

Earlier this week, the region mentioned that it would be opening an isolation shelter at the Radisson Hotel on King Street East in Kitchener.