Government of Canada Helps People Who Are Homeless or at Risk of Homelessness in Saskatoon

From the Government of Canada’s press release

SASKATOON, SASKATCHEWAN–(Marketwire – July 5, 2012) – Vulnerable Canadians who are homeless or at risk of homelessness will have greater access to housing and support services, announced Kelly Block, Member of Parliament for Saskatoon-Rosetown-Biggar, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development (HRSDC).

“Our government is giving a hand-up to Canadians to help them meet certain basic needs and break free from the cycle of homelessness and poverty,” said Ms. Block. “We are pleased to support the Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnership in its efforts to find local solutions to local problems.”

“We are looking forward to working with our community, the Community Advisory Board and HRSDC, to develop solutions for the challenges faced by the homeless and those at risk of homelessness in Saskatoon,” said Tyler Mathies, President of the Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnership (SHIP). “SHIP’s mission is to foster creative and affordable housing solutions in Saskatoon, and we believe that our new role as community entity will help us achieve our mission, while creating a safe, healthy and prosperous community.”

Over the next two years, the Homelessness Partnering Strategy will be investing nearly $3 million in Saskatoon. The Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnership will be distributing this funding to local organizations for the development of housing and support services for people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

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Backgrounder

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 designated communities across Canada. The HPS took effect April 1, 2007, with annual funding of $134.8 million for two years. In September 2008, the Government committed to investing more than $1.9 billion in housing and homelessness programs over five years, until March 2014. This includes a renewal of the HPS until March 2014.

As of July 2, 2012, a total of 2 047 approved projects totalling over $693 million have been funded under the HPS to prevent and reduce homelessness in Canada.

The HPS provides structures and supports that help people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness 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.

The availability of safe, 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 Government’s investments are creating jobs, stimulating local economies and improving the quality of life for many Canadians.

By working with all our partners, we will maximize results to make a lasting difference in the lives of vulnerable Canadians. The HPS provides the support that our community partners are seeking.

The HPS encourages a housing-first approach, which recognizes that housing stability is an important first step in addressing homelessness, and is necessary for the success of other interventions such as education and training, life skills development or management of mental health issues.

For more information on the HPS and the seven funding streams, visit www.hrsdc.gc.ca/homelessness.

The Lighthouse has had an excellent working relationship with the Homelessness Partnering Strategy in the past and looks forward to working with both it and Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnership in the future.

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