VANCOUVER, Aug. 26, 2019 /CNW/ - With the help of the National Housing Co-Investment Fund (NHCF), more youth struggling with homelessness in downtown Vancouver will have a supportive place to call home as 108 beds will be available once Covenant House's expansion is complete, with 28 female identified beds available at the new 1302 Seymour building today.
This project is made possible through the Government of Canada's National Housing Strategy, an ambitious 10-year, $55 billion plan that will create 125,000 new housing units and lift 530,000 families out of housing need, as well as repair and renew more than 300,000 housing units and reduce chronic homelessness by 50 percent.
The Honourable Hedy Fry, Member of Parliament for Vancouver Centre, on behalf of the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and the Minister responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), made the announcement today.
Through the NHCF, the federal government is contributing more than $11.95 million toward the Covenant House expansion in two phases.
- Phase 1 ($5.1 million, opening today): A new construction with 5 storeys and 28 shelter beds. Once Phase 2 is complete these beds will become available for youth relapsing with drugs and/or alcohol, providing a safe place to take the first transitional step toward recovery.
- Phase 2 ($6.85 million, announced today): A redevelopment with 10 storeys and 80 crisis beds. These beds will be available for homeless and at-risk youth in need of immediate care and services in a supportive and congregate setting.
As a NHCF-funded project, it brings leverages funding from multiple partners, including the Government of British Columbia, the City of Vancouver, and donations collected by Covenant House Vancouver. The project also meets the affordable housing and energy efficiency criteria set forth by NHCF guidelines.
Covenant House Vancouver is an established agency known for its leading best practice in supporting homeless and at-risk street youth. Through this expansion it can provide sanctuary and support services to more youth, many of which are young women, LGBTQ, Indigenous, immigrant, refugee and human trafficked youth, and face mental health issues, addiction and violence.
"The National Housing Strategy prioritizes helping young people who are at-risk of homelessness because breaking this destructive cycle early on is crucially important to paving the way for a better future ahead. I'm thrilled to see Covenant House open its doors to the community with this stunning new building, so they can continue the critical work they do with vulnerable youth in the community." — The Honourable Hedy Fry, Member of Parliament for Vancouver Centre
"Covenant House Vancouver is grateful for the support from the Government of Canada and CMHC towards the expansion of our services for youth experiencing and at-risk of homelessness. Through our expansion we will provide sanctuary and support services to more young people, many of which are young women, LGBTQ, Indigenous, immigrant, refugee and human trafficked youth, and face mental health issues, addiction and violence." — Krista Thompson, Chief Executive Officer for Covenant House Vancouver
- Covenant House Vancouver is grateful to the individuals, corporations and foundations who have contributed to the success of the project and we will continue to fundraise through construction.
- Located at 530 & 575 Drake St. (to become 1302 and 1280 Seymour St.) the project is close to transit services and other amenities, and will have onsite counselling, job training, housing support and recreational facilities.
- The expansion project will achieve significant reduction in energy consumption (28% in Phase 1; 25% in Phase 2) and 25% reduction in GHG emissions
- With a budget of $13.2 billion, NHCF gives priority to projects that help those in greatest need, including women and children fleeing family violence, seniors, Indigenous Peoples, people with disabilities, those dealing with mental health and addictions, Veterans and young adults.
- Through the NHCF, the Government of Canada will work with partners to build up to 60,000 new affordable homes and repair up to 240,000 existing affordable and community homes over the next 10 years.
- Investments are also planned in the NHCF to create or repair at least 4,000 shelter spaces for victims of family violence and create at least 7,000 new affordable housing units for seniors and 2,400 new affordable housing units for people with developmental disabilities.
- Under the Investing in Canada plan, the Government of Canada is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada's rural and northern communities.
- As Canada's authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. CMHC's aim is that by 2030, everyone in Canada has a home they can afford, and that meets their needs. For more information, please visit cmhc.ca or follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.
- To find out more about the National Housing Strategy, visit www.placetocallhome.ca.
- Covenant House Vancouver is a non-profit organization that started its operations in Vancouver in 1997 as part of an international network with branches in 31 cities. CHV has become an established and reputable agency with unique and leading best practice in the youth homelessness field. It provides a range of services to youth aged 16-24 experiencing or at-risk for homelessness, including street outreach, drop-in and many support services. To find out more, visit www.covenanthousebc.org
SOURCE Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
For further information: Media contacts: Valérie Glazer, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, 613-220-1841, [email protected]; Leonard Catling, CMHC Media Relations, 604-787-1787, [email protected]