WOODSTOCK, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 7, 2012) - Domestic Abuse Services Oxford celebrated today the renovation and reopening of a 21-bed shelter for victims of family violence in Woodstock.
Dave MacKenzie, Member of Parliament for Oxford, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC); and Marlene Van Ham, Board Chair of Domestic Abuse Services Oxford, made the announcement today.
"Our government is pleased to be a partner in the renovations to this shelter," said MP MacKenzie. "Women and children in need of a hand up have a safe and supportive place to live, as well as the services they need to begin a new chapter in their lives."
"The Ontario government is pleased to support Domestic Abuse Services Oxford in its goal to create safe and secure environments for women and their children in times of crisis," said the Honourable Bob Chiarelli, Ontario's Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. "This modernized facility will provide its residents with a comfortable safe environment where families can get the assistance they need."
The $504,000 investment in the shelter, provided by the federal and provincial governments, has been used to renovate the 21-bed shelter. Improvements were made to the living, dining, kitchen and children's play areas. Funds were also used to enhance accessibility and security at the shelter. This funding comes as a result of the $481 million Investment in Affordable Housing 2011-2014 Agreement between the Governments of Canada and Ontario.
"The newly expanded and renovated areas are not only more attractive and comfortable, but they also support the diverse needs of our residents," says Marlene Van Ham. "They can enjoy the camaraderie of cooking, dining and socializing together, but quieter spaces for reading, reflecting, or meeting one-on-one with staff are also available."
Domestic Abuse Services Oxford is committed to ending the cycle of domestic abuse and helping families make the transition to lives free from violence and abuse. Their primary mandate is to be available and accessible to women and their children living in Oxford County who are impacted by domestic abuse. The shelter's recent renovation significantly enhances the programs and services offered.
The Government of Canada, through CMHC, will invest approximately $2 billion in housing this year. Of this amount, $1.7 billion will be spent in support of almost 605,000 households living in existing social housing. In Ontario, this represents close to 238,000 households. These investments are improving the quality of life for low-income Canadians and households living in existing social housing, including individuals who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness, seniors, persons with disabilities, recent immigrants and Aboriginal people.
Ontario continues to build new affordable housing and repair existing units for Ontarians with housing needs. Since 2009, the provincial government has provided more than $191 million to build new rental housing units for low-income seniors and persons with disabilities. Since 2003, Ontario's funding commitment of nearly $3 billion is the largest affordable housing program in the province's history. Ontario is supporting the creation of over 17,000 affordable rental housing units; making more than 263,000 repairs and improvements to social and affordable housing units; and providing rental and down payment assistance to over 81,000 households in need. The province's Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy sets a strong foundation for a more efficient, accessible affordable housing system in Ontario.
Affordable housing is a key component of Ontario's Poverty Reduction Strategy. Download a copy of the Government of Ontario's Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy. To find out more about affordable housing in Ontario, visit www.ontario.ca/housing.
To find out more about how the Government of Canada and CMHC are working to build stronger homes and communities for all Canadians, call CMHC at 1-800-668-2642 or visit www.cmhc.ca.