Tag Archives: Kelly Block

Saskatoon organizations receive funding to fight homelessness

Via Eagle Feather News

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Gaps in services mean that many people who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness in Saskatoon are tragically falling through the cracks. Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnership (SHIP) and the Community Advisory Board on Saskatoon Homelessness (CAB-SH) are proud to announce new services and supports for individuals and families who face homelessness which will fill these gaps.

The Government of Canada’s Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) aims to prevent and reduce homelessness across Canada. The HPS program is generously providing $464,734 for these important capital and service projects:

1. The Saskatoon Indian and Metis Friendship Centre will receive $35,306 in capital funding to renovate their client meeting space and lobby.

2. The Lighthouse Supported Living Inc. will receive $55,941 in capital funding to develop a bed bug heating chamber and renovate the laundry facilities for their supported living clients.

3. The Saskatoon Indian and Métis Friendship Centre in partnership with the Friendship Inn will receive $223,526 in multi-year funding for three new staff positions to address homelessness. Two Rapid Rehousing Case Managers and one Centralized Intake staff person will assess needs and support individuals and families to find housing, access income supports and work towards housing stability. The Centralized Intake position will serve clients who may be referred to a number of appropriate services, including Housing First case management.

4. The Lighthouse Supported Living Inc. will receive $150,261 in multi-year funding for a Housing Locator position to help locate and secure housing for Housing First and non-Housing First clients in Saskatoon.

FullSizeRender (6)“Our Government is proud to support the Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnership and its partners, The Lighthouse Supported Living and the Saskatoon Indian Métis Friendship Centre, and all the work they do in Saskatoon,” said Kelly Block, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources and Member of Parliament for Saskatoon–Rosetown–Biggar. “With a roof over their heads, all Canadians can prosper as we work together towards eliminating homelessness.”

The four new staff positions will work collaboratively with Housing First case managers at Crisis Intervention Services, as well as other community agencies that provide case management and support to people who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness.

“Our organization has witnessed the tremendous difficulty people experience when trying to find housing they can afford, especially when they move into Saskatoon for the first time,” says Bill Mintram, Executive Director of the Saskatoon Indian and Métis Friendship Centre. “We are hopeful that the new staff will be able to assess the need, redirect people out of shelters and provide real support to secure permanent housing.”

Sandra Stack, Executive Director of the Friendship Inn, sees this work as a whole community effort:

“Providing housing to a homeless person or family is grounding. From a place of stability, they can tackle other issues. We are very excited to be in collaboration with the Friendship Centre and our other community partners to fill these critical gaps in support. My hope is that the community as a whole, Saskatoon citizens as neighbours and landlords, will be supportive and as excited as we are about reducing homelessness.”

These investments at the Lighthouse that will have a significant impact on the quality of life for Lighthouse residents and those who have experienced homelessness in Saskatoon, says Don Windels, Executive Director of the Lighthouse Supported Living Inc.

“The Housing Locator is a key part of Housing First, finding appropriate housing for some of the most vulnerable, high-needs and at-risk individuals in our community.”

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.