Human Resources and Social Development Canada

Human Resources and Social Development Canada
CITY OF TORONTO

CITY OF TORONTO

February 21, 2008 14:30 ET

New Housing for People Living with Mental Illness Opens Doors in Toronto

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 21, 2008) - Federal, provincial, municipal and community partners gathered today to celebrate the official opening of Houselink Delaware, a supportive housing facility offering counselling and assistance to adults recovering from mental illness.

Attending today's ceremony were Mr. Colin Carrie, Member of Parliament for Oshawa, on behalf of the Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development, Deputy Mayor Joe Pantalone (Ward 19, Trinity-Spadina) and Ms. Peggy Birnberg and Ms. Susan McMurdo, representing Houselink.

"Our government is delivering on its commitment to help those who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless," said Mr. Carrie. "Houselink Delaware will provide individuals living with mental illness with access to safe and supportive housing, so they can become more independent and enjoy a better quality of life."

The Government of Canada is fostering partnerships with all levels of government and community organizations to address homelessness in Canada, and contributed $615,328 in federal homelessness funding to the Houselink Delaware project. As well, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) provided $100,000 in Proposal Development Funding, $68,742 in Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program - Rooming House funding, and Mortgage Loan Insurance.

In addition, the City of Toronto contributed $303,072 through the Mayor's Homelessness Fund and $202,387 in fee and property tax waivers.

"I want to congratulate the people at Houselink who have worked so hard to make this facility a reality," Deputy Mayor Pantalone said. "I'm proud of the fact that the City of Toronto has supported such an important service for the people in our community."

Into the Warmth, an organization of citizens who wanted to ensure the success of the project, contributed approximately $500,000. As well, Houselink itself contributed over $1.53 million towards this project, some $75,000 of which was obtained through private donations. Houselink also receives operational funding for rent supplements and support services from the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.

The project involved the renovation of a transitional housing facility at 46 Delaware Avenue. Funding allowed for new units to be added to the side of an existing property owned by Houselink, to create a total of 14 units for people with mental health illness who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

"The person who donated the building to Houselink in 2001 would be proud," said Ms. McMurdo, a member of Houselink and Vice-President of the Board of Directors. "Not only does the building provide housing for about 18 individuals who might otherwise be without a home, but it was renovated keeping the original design elements of the building and the extension blends in beautifully with the other buildings on the street."

As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on more than 60 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally sustainable, and affordable homes - homes that will continue to create vibrant and healthy communities and cities across the country.

In December 2006, the Government of Canada announced a two-year $256-million extension of CMHC's renovation programs for low-income households. These programs will help improve the living conditions for some 38,000 low-income people including seniors, persons with disabilities, victims of family violence and Aboriginal peoples.

The Government of Canada, through its Homelessness Partnering Strategy, is taking action to prevent and reduce homelessness. This strategy is providing $269.6 million over two years to help communities across Canada combat homelessness more effectively.

For more information on the Homelessness Partnering Strategy, please visit
www.homelessness.gc.ca.

For more information on the City of Toronto's Affordable Housing Office, please visit www.toronto.ca/affordablehousing.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

Contact Information

  • Human Resources and Social Development Canada
    Media Relations Office
    819-994-5559
    or
    City of Toronto
    Affordable Housing Office
    Gil Hardy
    416-397-4701
    ghardy@toronto.ca