Calgary Homeless Foundation

Calgary Homeless Foundation

January 27, 2011 16:33 ET

Calgary Homeless Foundation: More Than 2,300 Men, Women and Children Housed Over Three Years

Includes Providing Housing and Support to More Than 450 Families

An Update on the Third Quarter of Fiscal 2010/2011 (October 1 - December 31, 2010)

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Jan. 27, 2011) - Given the results of the third quarter, Calgary's 10 Year Plan to End Homelessness (Plan) will have housed more than 2,300(1) people in its first three years, including 450(2) families.

"Being able to house more than 2,300 people in three years is an amazing accomplishment," said Tim Richter, Calgary Homeless Foundation (CHF) President and CEO. "But even more important is that agencies are working hard to support people, so between 85 to 95 percent are retaining their housing - the key to stop people from cycling in and out of homelessness."

Third Quarter and Year to Date Performance toward Fiscal 2010/2011 Priorities

Table 1

Number of people housed (received affordable housing)                       
  Third quarter                                                          430
  Year to date                                                         1,135
Number of people served(assisted within an emergency shelter                
 or provided with support services in CHF funded programs)                  
  Third quarter                                                        2,966
  Year to date                                                         8,707

Table 2(3)

Priority populations - Q1 progress(4)                        Housed   Served
Chronic and episodically homeless(5)                                        
  Third quarter                                                 199      249
  Year to date                                                  619      661
Families with children                                                      
  Third quarter                                                  77      528
  Year to date                                                  189    1,498
Youth (young people up to age 24)                                           
  Third quarter                                                  34      218
  Year to date                                                   95      589
Aboriginal Peoples                                                          
  Third quarter                                                  94      421
  Year to date(6)                                               249    1,250

1. Calculated by adding the number of people housed during the first two
   years of the Plan and those housed to December 2010.
2. Calculated by adding the number of families housed during the first two
   years of the Plan and those housed to December 2010.
3. Table 2 shows distribution of services by priority population. Table 2
   totals do not add to Table 1 totals because people can be in more than
   one category.
4. Programs that provide services that do not include housing are under
   'Served.' Programs that provide housing are under 'Housed.'
5. The number for 'Housed' and 'Served' chronic and episodically homeless
   may have a level of inaccuracy due to different definitions for the terms
   'chronic' and 'episodic'. The implementation of the Homeless Management
   Information System will significantly improve the quality of data
   received and reported.
6. The Aboriginal Peoples numbers only include adults except in the case of
   NeighbourLink data, which includes children and adults.

Key deliverables                 Q3 progress (qualitative)                  
Redouble efforts to end family   Family-serving agencies are aligning       
homelessness                     prevention efforts and establishing common 
                                 intake processes. The goal is to shorten   
                                 the length of stay in emergency shelters   
                                 and prevent families from becoming         
Prioritize investment to         A winter response plan was implemented to  
address chronic and episodic     ensure adequate capacity at shelters to    
homelessness                     handle more people. For the first time, a  
                                 24/7 coordinated street and camp outreach  
                                 response was initiated for people sleeping 
Apply new knowledge to enhance   The CHF awarded a contract to Aspen Family 
prevention efforts               Services and The Inn From The Cold to      
                                 provide floating case management support to
                                 prevent families most at risk of becoming  
                                 homeless. A draft of the Youth Plan to End 
                                 Homelessness is being circulated for       
Build a Homeless Information     The CHF signed a contract with Bowman      
Management System (HMIS)         Systems LLC (Bowman) to be the software    
                                 supplier for Canada's first HMIS. In       
                                 cooperation with Bowman, policies and      
                                 procedures were established and the system 
                                 administrator was trained.                 
Develop affordable housing for   Progress on a $1.8 million renovation      
those with the greatest          program was substantially completed,       
barriers to housing              including a $660,000 renovation program at 
                                 the Sunalta property. The CHF is awaiting a
                                 response from the Government of Alberta    
                                 regarding application for grants for       
                                 another 200 units.                         
Align federal Homeless           The CHF will be the agent overseeing HPS   
Partnering Strategy (HPS)        funding until March 31, 2014. Proposals for
funding in Calgary to Plan       HPS funding in 2011/12 were submitted      
                                 during the third quarter.                  
Complete a three-year review     The original Plan was launched in 2008. The
and update the Plan              CHF worked with stakeholders to update the 
                                 Plan. The updated Plan will be released in 
                                 January 2011.                              

Indicators of success            Q3 progress                                
Reduce year-over-year            During the third quarter, Calgary Housing  
emergency shelter use by 5%      and Urban Affairs (HUA) funded shelters    
(which means about 100 fewer     reported stabilized occupancy levels       
HUA-funded emergency shelter     compared with the same quarter in 2009. The
spaces used)                     months of October, November and December   
                                 saw an average of 2,080 beds used per      
                                 month, compared with 2,098 beds for the    
                                 same quarter in 2009 (a one percent        
Retire 150 HUA-funded            The CHF began working with the Salvation   
emergency shelter beds           Army on a plan to convert emergency shelter
                                 beds into affordable housing.              
Reduce the average length of     Homeless families currently stay in an     
stay in family homeless          emergency shelter about three weeks before 
shelters to 14 days and reduce   moving to permanent housing. The goal is   
year-over-year family shelter    reduce this time to two weeks over the next
use                              few years and then seven days or less by   
                                 2018. Critical to achieving this goal is   
                                 introducing HMIS.                          
Achieve 85% one-year housing     CHF-funded housing programs continued to   
retention rate at CHF-funded     achieve an 85% or greater housing retention
housing programs                 rate based on follow up with individuals   
                                 and families at three, six, nine and 12-   
                                 month intervals.                           


--  New floating case management program to prevent family homelessness 
--  Software supplier, Bowman, chosen to build Canada's first HMIS 
--  CHF to administer Homeless Partnering Strategy funds to March 31, 2014 

Programs and innovations

The CHF worked with the community on a plan to respond to higher demands for shelter when the weather turns cold. The need for winter response capacity in emergency shelters was reduced in 2010 compared with 2009. As well, for the first time in Calgary, a 24/7 coordinated street and camp outreach response was put in place so people sleeping outside are offered support to stay safe if they choose to remain outside, to seek temporary shelter or to end their homelessness with housing and support.

The CHF awarded a project to provide floating case management to prevent family homelessness to Aspen Family Services and The Inn From The Cold. The agencies will partner to target families at imminent risk of homelessness in Calgary and is based on local pilot projects and "best practice" research findings from around the world. The project was awarded a three-year funding contract of $750,000 per year from the Government of Alberta to ensure long-term program stability and planning.

A draft Plan to End Youth Homelessness was developed, emphasizing preventing youth homelessness. The draft includes input from youth (up to 24 years of age) and youth-serving agencies in Calgary, and is based on research from around the world. The draft is being reviewed by key stakeholders, with consultation expected to be complete in March 2011.


The CHF made a follow up policy submission to the new Alberta Health Act in October. The submission advocated for discharge policies and processes from health care facilities into supportive housing to reduce the incidence of homelessness and to recognize safe, affordable housing as a critical factor in health care reform.


The CHF is implementing a HMIS, which is an electronic system to collect consistent information about Calgary's homeless population and coordinate the homeless-serving sector in providing services. In November, the CHF signed a contract with Bowman to be the software supplier for Canada's first HMIS. In cooperation with Bowman, policies and procedures were established, including data sets, ethics, privacy, security and reporting. The Calgary Dream Centre donated space and technical resources to enable ongoing training, with training of the system administrator completed in December.

In October, Suzanne Fitzpatrick, a leading expert on welfare and housing policy in the European Union and United Kingdom shared her knowledge with Calgary agencies and academics. The CHF also attended two conferences in Canada, sharing research to develop case management standards for homelessness and research priorities in Canada on homelessness.

The CHF began consulting with the family sector to develop a research agenda for family homelessness. University of Calgary Social Work practicum students began collecting and reviewing research related to "best practices" to prevent and intervene on family homelessness.

During the third quarter, the CHF partnered with the University of Calgary to recruit and train six research assistants who are collecting data for a Canadian Homelessness Research Network.


The CHF continued to implement a $1.8 million renovation program at five of its affordable housing properties. These renovations include upgrading 210 units in the buildings.

During the third quarter, renovations at the Sunalta property were completed, leading to an official opening of the 33-unit building by the Government of Canada and The City of Calgary in December 2010. The Government of Canada contributed more than $660,000 toward renovating the building, including individual rooms and common areas. The building was purchased by the CHF in 2009 for approximately $1.2 million, of which more than $1.1 million was provided by The City of Calgary. This money came from the Government of Alberta's Municipal Block Funding Grant for capital development of affordable housing. Calgary businesses and contractors also contributed to the renovation by providing materials and services in-kind.

At the end of the third quarter, there were no vacancies at the CHF's affordable housing properties, with the exception of units undergoing renovations.

Communications and fund development

In October, Premier Stelmach hosted the annual Ed's House Warming Party. Attendees raised about $125,000 toward new affordable housing, as well renovations and tenant support at existing properties.

Approximately 800 Calgarians experiencing or at risk of homelessness received services and supports from more than 45 agencies at the 10th Project Homeless Connect (PHC) in November. To date, nearly 8,000 individuals have attended PHCs. The CHF is grateful to Brookfield Properties for providing the venue, Burnett Duckworth & Palmer LLP and Suncor Energy for their financial support and 125 volunteers for helping out during the day. The next PHC will be held on February 19, 2011 at the Suncor Energy Centre.


During the quarter, the CHF Board of Directors welcomed Tom Jackson as a new Director. The CHF is developing a Code of Ethics for employees and Directors.


During the third quarter, the Government of Canada announced the CHF will continue to administer funding through the Homeless Partnering Strategy (HPS) until March 31, 2014. The amount of funding is expected to be about $5 million annually.

The CHF is working with agencies in a request for proposal process to align this funding with the Plan. The Community Action Committee (CAC) is reviewing proposals and making funding recommendations for the operating and capital funds. The Aboriginal Standing Community on Housing and Homelessness is reviewing proposals for the Aboriginal Homelessness funding. The CHF will notify successful applicants in January 2011 based on available HPS funding.


Quarter ended December 31, 2010 ($)            Total                  Detail
Total revenues                             3,731,357       904,424 operating
                                                           2,826,933 project
Expenses                                   6,401,835     1,389,543 operating
                                                           5,012,293 project
Excess (deficiency) of revenues over     (2,670,478)     (485,119) operating
 expenses                                                (2,185,360) project

Year to date (ending December 31, 2010) ($)                            Total
Total revenues                                                    31,315,497
Expenses                                                          17,665,512
Excess (deficiency) of revenues over expenses                     13,649,985

Cash decreased $3.26 million during the third quarter ending December 31, 2010 compared with the prior quarter due to using cash received in September 2010 to support the CHF's operations and make scheduled project payment to Calgary agencies. This decrease in cash was offset by the receipt of third and fourth quarter HPS funds from the Government of Canada in the third quarter. Deposits in trust for real estate acquisitions increased by $300,000 as of December 31, 2010 compared with September 30, 2010 because three properties were under conditional purchase agreements as at December 31, 2010. Cash balances in the first nine months ending December 31, 2010 were $4.7 million higher compared with the same period ending December 31, 2009. This was due to receipt of 2010/11 provincial Service Delivery Plan (SDP) funding at a higher value compared with fiscal 2010.

Revenues generated during the third quarter of fiscal 2011 increased compared with the same quarter in fiscal 2010 due to receipt of HPS funds for both the third and fourth quarters. Project disbursements rose during the third quarter of fiscal 2011 compared with the third quarter of fiscal 2010 as a result of more funding contracts in place with Calgary agencies and higher SDP funding allocations in fiscal 2011. Operating expenses increased in the third quarter of fiscal 2011 compared with the third quarter of fiscal 2010. This was primarily because the CHF operated six affordable housing properties in the third quarter of fiscal 2011 compared with only two properties in the third quarter of fiscal 2010. Other factors included the costs to develop HMIS, renovation of office space and general increases due to higher levels of operations. Revenues generated in the first nine months ending December 31, 2010 rose compared with the same period ending December 31, 2009, due to an increase in provincial funding to support community agencies.

In the third quarter of fiscal 2011, operating activities used $3.38 million of cash as a result of the timing of revenue receipt, since SDP funding was received and recognized in the second quarter of fiscal 2011. During the third quarter of fiscal 2011, investing activities were nearly unchanged. Financing activities during the same period generated $118,000 due to receipt of a forgivable loan from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to renovate the Sunalta affordable housing property. For the nine months ending December 31, 2011, operating activities generated $10.6 million of cash, investing activities used $7.04 million and financing activities generated $1.25 million.

The Calgary Homeless Foundation leads the implementation of Calgary's 10 Year Plan to End Homelessness. Issued in January 2008, Calgary's 10 Year Plan was created by the Calgary Committee to End Homelessness, a community-based, multi-stakeholder, leadership group who issued the Plan and selected the CHF to implement the Plan. The CHF is moving forward on Calgary's 10 Year Plan in partnership with the many homeless serving agencies, the private sector, our government partners, the faith community, other foundations and all Calgarians to end homelessness in Calgary once and for all. Calgarians wishing to contribute by making donations or volunteering are encouraged to visit the CHF website:

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