Human Resources and Social Development Canada

Human Resources and Social Development Canada

March 18, 2008 16:00 ET

The Government of Canada Delivers Support to Help Those Who Are Homeless in Alberta

EDMONTON, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - March 18, 2008) - Families and individuals in Alberta working to break free from the cycles of homelessness and poverty and building a stronger future for themselves are getting help from the Government of Canada.

Mr. Laurie Hawn, Member of Parliament for Edmonton Centre, on behalf of the Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development, today announced funding for 37 projects worth over $25 million in Alberta under the government's Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS).

"Our government is delivering on its commitment to help those who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless," said Mr. Hawn. "We are proud to support community efforts that help find local solutions to local problems. Working together, we can help our most vulnerable citizens find a place to call home as well as find the supports they need to become more self-sufficient."

The announcement took place at the Hope Mission's Women's Emergency Shelter and Hope Mission Youth Shelter in Edmonton. This organization received approximately $1.1 million in federal homelessness funding in partnership with the Edmonton Housing Trust Fund for the development of 72 transitional and emergency housing spaces for women and youth who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

"This project is allowing us to not only provide basic needs to women and youth, but also to offer them hope and resources for a stronger, more independent, future," said Ms. Karen Nelson manager of Hope Mission's Women's Emergency Shelter. "This was made possible because of the support Hope Mission received from the federal government and the Edmonton Housing Trust Fund."

On February 22, 2008, Minister Solberg announced that 505 projects totalling almost $150 million had been approved under the HPS to prevent and reduce homelessness in Canada. The announcement made today is part of this total funding.

The HPS is providing $269.6 million over two years to help communities across Canada combat homelessness more effectively. The Strategy recognizes that housing stability is essential to self-sufficiency and full participation in Canadian society. It focuses on transitional and supportive housing as important measures to help people overcome homelessness. With its clear goals of improved partnerships, enhanced sustainability and tangible results, the Strategy will provide concrete, meaningful and lasting results for Canadians in need.

"Our government is investing more in affordable and supportive housing than any federal government in Canada's history, and as a result we are helping tens of thousands of Canadians reach a better, more stable life," said MP Hawn.

The link between homelessness and mental illness is well-established. With Budget 2008, the Government is committed to developing solutions that will save lives by providing $110 million to the Mental Health Commission of Canada to support innovative demonstration projects to develop best practices to help Canadians facing mental health and homelessness challenges.


BACKGROUNDER

The Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) began on April 1, 2007. The Strategy is providing $269.6 million over two years to prevent and reduce homelessness in Canada. The HPS is a unique community-based program aimed at preventing and reducing homelessness in Canada by providing funding and direct support to more than 60 communities across Canada.

Under the HPS, the Government of Canada is offering to work in partnership with all provinces and territories. Once put in place, such partnerships would encourage better alignment of federal and provincial/territorial investments, and help to provide a seamless continuum of supports for homeless people.

The HPS has three main initiatives: the Homelessness Partnership Initiative, the Homelessness Accountability Network and the Surplus Federal Real Property for Homelessness Initiative.

The Homelessness Partnership Initiative (HPI) is the cornerstone of the Homelessness Partnering Strategy. Its housing-first approach recognizes that the first step is to provide individuals with transitional and supportive housing.

The HPI has four funding components:

- Designated Communities

- Outreach Communities

- Aboriginal Communities

- Federal Horizontal Pilot Projects

The Homelessness Accountability Network helps to strengthen program accountability. It also develops knowledge and encourages organizations to reinforce their networks and share best practices.

The Surplus Federal Real Property for Homelessness Initiative makes surplus federal property as well as land available to community organizations, the not-for-profit sector, and other levels of government, for projects to prevent and reduce homelessness.

A fact sheet is available at the following address: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/Fact_Sheet_0318.pdf

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

Contact Information

  • Human Resources and Social Development Canada
    Media Relations Office
    819-994-5559