Government of Canada Helps Those Who Are Homeless or at Risk of Homelessness in Cranbrook, British Columbia, Canada.
Thanks to support from the Government of Canada, the Cranbrook and District Community Foundation can prepare for the construction of a permanent emergency shelter facility for individuals in need. The Honorable Jim Abbott, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Cooperation and Member of Parliament for Kootenay-Columbia, made the announcement today on behalf of the Honorable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development.
"Our government is giving a hand-up to Canadians with housing needs and is helping those seeking to break free of the cycle of homelessness and poverty," said Mr. Abbott. "We are pleased to partner with the Cranbrook and District Community Foundation to complete these steps in the process of developing a new emergency shelter that will benefit homeless individuals and families in the Cranbrook area."
The Cranbrook and District Community Foundation will receive $118,204 through the Government of Canada's Homelessness Partnering Strategy to conduct pre-development activities on the future construction site. These activities include an environmental assessment, a site survey, a site appraisal, rezoning and the design of the future facility. The organization will also work to gather data on homelessness in the area.
"In the past five years, Cranbrook has seen a large increase in the number of homeless accessing services within our community," said Mr. Neil Cook, Chair of the Cranbrook and District Community Foundation. "This funding will assist us to meet the most basic of needs for men, women and families."
Furthermore, the Salvation Army is contributing $200,000 towards the project.
"The Salvation Army is pleased to be part of this community-wide initiative to provide shelter and care for our most vulnerable," said Major Brian Venables, Divisional Secretary for Public Relations and Development, Salvation Army. "Our national experience in providing shelter services coupled with the passion in the community create the resolve to supply the best solution to this pressing need in Cranbrook and area. We look forward to working with all of the partners throughout the development of this project."
In September 2008, the Government of Canada announced an investment of $1.9 billion over five years for housing and homelessness programs for low-income Canadians. This commitment gives the Government the flexibility to work with the provinces and territories and municipalities, and with charitable organizations, to develop ways to improve the effectiveness of federal spending in the area of housing and homelessness.
Canada's Economic Action Plan is building on these investments by making an additional one-time investment of more than $2 billion over two years in new and existing social housing, and by making available up to $2 billion in loans to Canadian municipalities over two years for housing-related infrastructure improvements. The Government's investments are creating jobs, stimulating local economies and improving the quality of life for many Canadians. To learn more about Canada's Economic Action Plan, please visit www.actionplan.gc.ca.
The availability of safe and stable housing and related supports is an important element in addressing homelessness and helping individuals who are homeless achieve greater self-sufficiency and a better quality of life. The Homelessness Partnering Strategy emphasizes longer-term supportive and transitional housing by focusing on a housing-first approach to help people make the transition out of the cycle of homelessness.
For more information on the Homelessness Partnering Strategy, please visit www.hrsdc.gc.ca/homelessness.
The Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) is a unique community-based program aimed at preventing and reducing homelessness by providing direct support and funding to 61 communities across Canada. The HPS took effect April 1, 2007, with annual funding of $134.8 million for two years, and was extended in 2008 for a further two years until March 31, 2011.
The HPS provides structures and supports that help people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless achieve self-sufficiency and full participation in society. This model seeks to address homelessness by working in partnership with the provinces and territories, other federal departments, as well as with communities and the private and not-for-profit sectors.
By working with all our partners, we will maximize results to make a lasting difference in the lives of vulnerable Canadians. The Homelessness Partnering Strategy provides the support that our community partners are seeking.
The Homelessness Partnering Strategy uses a housing-first approach, recognizing that the first step is to provide individuals with transitional and supportive housing.
The HPS has seven funding streams:
Federal Horizontal Pilot Projects
Homelessness Knowledge Development
Homeless Individuals and Families Information System
Surplus Federal Real Property for Homelessness Initiative
For more information on the Homelessness Partnering Strategy and the seven funding streams, please visit the following Web site: www.hrsdc.gc.ca/homelessness.
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