Construction starts on 36 new supportive homes in Prince Rupert
PRINCE RUPERT – People in Prince Rupert experiencing homelessness will have a home to call their own soon, as the Province starts construction on 36 units of supportive housing that will provide people with access to safe and secure homes with 24/7 supports.
“These new homes will give people the chance to get off the streets and into a home,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. “Everyone deserves a home where they feel safe and secure. The supportive housing we are building in Prince Rupert will open the door to stability and opportunity for people who have been left to struggle alone for too many years.”
The new homes will offer people experiencing or at risk of homelessness the stability they need to be able to focus on other aspects of their lives. Two of the homes have been designed to accommodate residents with disabilities.
The North Coast Transition Society will operate the building and provide residents with access to around-the clock on-site staff and support services, including meal programs, life and employment skills training, health and wellness support services, and opportunities for volunteer work.
These new homes are being constructed by a B.C. manufacturer, Horizon North, providing opportunities for local jobs in British Columbia.
Site preparation is underway at 1450 Park Ave. on land provided by the City of Prince Rupert. Residents are expected to move into the building by early 2019.
Jennifer Rice, MLA for North Coast –
“For too long members in our community have not had access to the housing they need. This important investment will provide stable housing and the necessary health and social supports to assist those most vulnerable in Prince Rupert. I can’t wait to see the positive impacts this development has on our community.
Mayor Lee Brain, City of Prince Rupert –
“This housing project, which will also include vital wraparound services, is a real breakthrough towards tackling homelessness in Prince Rupert. We are happy to have been given the opportunity to provide the space to make it happen, and want to thank our partners at the Province of BC, BC Housing and the North Coast Transition Society for their quick and steadfast work in making this a reality.”
Christine White, Executive Director, North Coast Transition Society –
“We have seen the need for subsidized, stable housing increasing over the past ten years in PR. It starts with the most basic of requirements shelter and food, if people have a place where they can feel safe and secure they can start to build on other aspects of their lives. Work, education, and the family unit all are dependant on a stable home environment. We believe that the changes the government is implementing will provide the tools for NCTS to further help people become permanently housed in stable housing. Our aim is to help people help themselves so they in turn move forward with their lives.”
- The Province is investing $7.1 million in capital and construction costs, and an annual operating subsidy, for the project.
- The homes are funded through the Building BC: Rapid Response to Homelessness program, part of a provincewide investment of $291 million to build 2,000 homes throughout B.C., and more than $170 million over three years for 24/7 staffing and support services.
- More than 2,000 new homes have been confirmed in 22 B.C. communities in less than a year.
- Budget 2018 provides further supports for people experiencing homelessness, with the announcement of an additional 2,500 new homes with 24/7 support services.
Building BC: Rapid Response to Homelessness program: https://www.bchousing.org/partner-services/Building-BC/rapid-response-homelessness
For a map of the Province's Building BC: Rapid Response to Homelessness projects, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/Building_BC_Rapid_Response_Homelessness_Map.pdf
Read Homes for B.C., government’s 30-point plan to address housing affordability for British Columbians: bcbudget.gov.bc.ca/2018/homesbc/2018_Homes_For_BC.pdf
To find out what the Province is doing to improve housing affordability, visit: news.gov.bc.ca/factsheets/bc-government-addressing-housing-affordability-challenges
A backgrounder follows.
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
Services and supports provided for modular housing
All new modular housing buildings in the province are being provided with around-the-clock staffing to help young people, people with disabilities, seniors and others in critical need of housing.
The Province is investing $170 million over three years to help those with the highest housing needs to build new beginnings. Experienced non-profit housing providers will provide support to tenants based on their assessed needs.
Some of the services and supports that will be provided to young people, seniors, people with disabilities and others who are homeless or in danger of becoming homeless, are:
- connecting residents to community supports, such as education and employment opportunities, and health and wellness services;
- individual or group support services, such as life skills, community information and social and recreational programs;
- case planning and needs assessment;
- other supports designed to assist residents in meeting their personal and housing goals, including culturally-specific programs;
- assistance to access income assistance, pension benefits, disability benefits, obtaining a BC Identification Card or establishing a bank account;
- support for residents to learn how to operate and maintain a home; and
- no-cost laundry services, either on-site or off-site.
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing