Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

May 20, 2010 17:30 ET

Government of Canada Helping Those Who Are Homeless or at Risk of Homelessness in Edmonton

EDMONTON, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - May 20, 2010) - Boys and Girls Clubs of Edmonton can now help more at-risk youth, thanks in part to funding from the Government of Canada. Today, Mr. Laurie Hawn, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence and Member of Parliament for Edmonton Centre, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, celebrated the opening of the organization's Bear Paw Apartments.

"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. Hawn. "With this funding, Boys and Girls Clubs of Edmonton is helping youth at risk who require a supportive environment to build upon their abilities to live independently."

The Homelessness Partnering Strategy provided an investment of over $920,000 to the Capital Region Housing Corporation, through Homeward Trust Edmonton. Additional funding of over $870,000 was provided by the City of Edmonton. This funding was used to expand housing and programming space for Bear Paw Apartments. The building now includes an office, a common area and storage space, as well as a suite for an on-site caretaker and accommodation for up to 23 youth.

"The City of Edmonton has made a commitment to end homelessness in our city, and I believe that by working together, we can make a tremendous difference," said His Worship Stephen Mandel, Mayor of the City of Edmonton. "The opening of Bear Paw Apartments will go a long way in providing much-needed support to some of the most vulnerable youth in our community."

"This project is an example of the success that comes with governments and community organizations working together," said Ms. Susan McGee, Executive Director of Homeward Trust Edmonton. "Ending homelessness is truly a community-wide effort. We are proud to work with the orders of government and other community organizations to achieve this goal."

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.

backgrounder

The Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) is a community-based program aimed at preventing and reducing homelessness by providing direct support and funding to more than 60 communities across Canada. The HPS took effect April 1, 2007, with annual funding of $134.8 million for two years. Funding for housing and homelessness programs has been extended for five years, until March 31, 2014.

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 non-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:

Regionally Delivered:

  • Designated Communities
  • Outreach Communities
  • Aboriginal Communities

Nationally Delivered:

  • 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.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Finley
    Michelle Bakos
    Press Secretary
    819-994-2482
    or
    Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
    Media Relations Office
    819-994-5559
    or
    Homeward Trust Edmonton
    Alex Abboud
    Communications Manager
    780-944-2845 or Cell: 780-902-6858