PRINCE GEORGE, BC, Feb. 23, 2018 /CNW/ - The Government of Canada is providing funding that will prevent and reduce homelessness in Prince George, British Columbia. Pam Goldsmith-Jones, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade and Member of Parliament for West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast -Sea to Sky Country, announced the investment today on behalf of the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development.
As the community entity for Prince George, the United Way of Northern British Columbia (UWNBC) is responsible for the project management and administering of funds through the Homelessness Partnering Strategy's Designated Communities stream. The UWNBC is receiving approximately $2.2 million to support local projects across the city that help prevent and reduce homelessness.
"The Government of Canada recognizes the pressing need to prevent and reduce homelessness in Canada. Investing in Canada's communities is not only about creating good jobs and encouraging economic growth; it is also about building stronger communities and empowering all Canadians to build better lives for themselves."
– The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development
"I'm pleased that we are helping the United Way of Northern British Columbia to provide support to the community to address their local homelessness needs. Through such projects, vulnerable people facing homelessness will also be connected to support programs and services they might need."
– Pam Goldsmith-Jones, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade and Member of Parliament for West Vancouver - Sunshine Coast - Sea to Sky Country
"There were 205 absolute homeless people counted in the April 2016 Point-in-Time (PiT) Count. We know that there is a high number of hidden homelessness, which was exempted from the PiT Count. Moving forward, we plan to work towards capturing the number of hidden homeless and couch surfers. These numbers tend to be much higher in summer months."
– Roberta Squire, MBA, Chief Executive Officer United Way of Northern BC
- To give more Canadians access to housing that is safe, adequate and affordable, the Government recently launched the National Housing Strategy. It is expected that this Strategy will help thousands of Canadian households in need to find adequate, suitable and affordable housing.
- As part of the National Housing Strategy, Budget 2017 announced a total investment of $2.2 billion over 10 years to tackle homelessness through an expanded and redesigned Homelessness Partnering Strategy.
- Budget 2016 announced an additional $111.8 million over two years, starting in 2016–17, for the Homelessness Partnering Strategy. This builds on the program's existing five-year investment of nearly $600 million over five years (2014−2019).
- Since April 1, 2014, the Homelessness Partnering Strategy has helped more than 6,000 Canadians who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless to begin education; more than 6,500 to begin job training; more than 5,000 find full-time and over 5,300 find part-time employment; and helped place over 38,000 people in more stable housing.
Homelessness Partnering Strategy
The Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) is a unique community-based program aimed at preventing and reducing homelessness by providing direct support and funding to 61 designated communities in all provinces and territories.
The HPS supports community efforts and allocates funds accordingly, which provides communities with the flexibility to invest in proven approaches that reduce homelessness at the local level. The HPS funds are targeted directly toward community priorities, which have been identified through an inclusive community planning process, involving officials from all orders of government, community stakeholders, and the private and voluntary sectors. The objectives of the HPS are achieved through several funding streams.
Regional Funding Streams
The majority of HPS funding is delivered regionally through three funding streams:
- Designated Communities;
- Rural and Remote Homelessness (non-designated communities); and
- Aboriginal Homelessness.
These streams focus on the needs of homeless individuals and individuals at imminent risk of homelessness at the local level, and provide funding to help individuals gain and maintain a stable living arrangement.
National Funding Streams
The three national funding streams support the development of innovative approaches to addressing homelessness and a better understanding of the homeless population across the country by supporting better local data collection, and making surplus federal real properties available to organizations that plan to use the facilities to address homelessness. The three national funding streams are:
- National Homelessness Information System;
- Surplus Federal Real Property Initiative; and
- Innovative Solutions to Homelessness.
SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada
For further information: Émilie Gauduchon-Campbell, Press Secretary, Office of the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, P.C., M.P., Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, 819-654-5546; Media Relations Office, Employment and Social Development Canada, 819-994-5559, [email protected]