11:27 AM

New housing opens for seniors, dementia care patients in Vanderhoof

VANDERHOOF - A first-of-its-kind housing development that will provide a mix of affordable rental homes for seniors and homes for people who require on-site dementia care support is now open in Vanderhoof.

“This new building will provide a significant supply of homes for vulnerable seniors and patients in Vanderhoof, allowing them to remain connected within their communities, while receiving the care they need,” said David Eby, Attorney General and Minister Responsible for Housing. “I want to thank the many partners involved who helped us ensure seniors have safe and affordable housing, along with basic dignity and respect.”

Located at  2657 Church Ave., Parkview Place is a three-storey building with 20 one-bedroom rental homes for seniors with low to moderate incomes. A new licensed dementia care facility, named Aurora Homes, will operate out of the building’s ground floor and will provide an additional eight accessible studio units for patients, which will open later in 2022. Residents will be supported in a home environment by a unique care program that is based on their needs. The homes feature new technologies that support dementia care, such as circadian rhythm lighting. It will also ease the transition for independent seniors who are slowly losing cognitive function and may soon require additional support.

Parkview Place is the first building in B.C. to combine independent seniors housing with a licensed dementia care facility with 24-hour staffing.

The project is a partnership between the Province, through BC Housing, Northern Health, the District of Vanderhoof, Connexus Community Resources and the federal government, through the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

Connexus Community Resources will oversee day-to-day management of both Parkview Place and Aurora Homes, with Northern Health primary care teams providing eligibility assessments and specialized care.

This project is part of B.C.’s 10-year, $7-billion housing plan. Since 2017, the Province has funded nearly 34,000 affordable new homes that have been completed or are underway for people in British Columbia.

Quick Facts:

  • The Province, through BC Housing provided a grant of approximately $2.2 million through the Building BC: Community Housing Fund for the 20 affordable homes for independent seniors, as well as approximately $177,000 in annual operating funding.
  • Northern Health provided approximately $2 million in funding for the eight dementia care units, as well as approximately $766,000 in annual operating funding. 
  • The Government of Canada, through the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, and the Government of British Columbia, through BC Housing, jointly contributed $349,000 in BC Priorities Housing Initiative bilateral agreement grants.
  • The District of Vanderhoof provided the land for Parkview Place, valued at approximately $150,000.

Learn More:

A map showing the location of all announced provincially funded housing projects in B.C. is available online: https://www.bchousing.org/homes-for-BC

To learn about the steps the Province is taking to tackle the housing crisis and deliver affordable homes for British Columbians, visit: https://workingforyou.gov.bc.ca/

A backgrounder follows.

Backgrounder - What people are saying about seniors, dementia-care housing

Adrian Dix, Minister of Health –

“Seniors helped build B.C., and our government is working hard to improve and strengthen seniors’ care in our province, especially when it comes to those with dementia. This new development builds on the progress we have made, including the recent start of construction of a dementia village in Comox, ensuring people can continue to live meaningful lives close to loved ones.” 

Mable Elmore, Parliamentary Secretary for Seniors’ Services and Long-Term Care –

“This is great news for people in Vanderhoof and area as it supports our government’s priority of assisting  older adults by helping them stay healthy, socially engaged and as independent as possible.”

Colleen Nyce, board chair, Northern Health –

“Aurora Home provides a new housing option by supporting residents with dementia to live in an innovative home environment. This project demonstrates our commitment to providing co-ordinated and accessible health services to all people in the North, as well as our commitment to collaborating with community partners. We look forward to complementing our existing home and community care services by offering specialized dementia care to northerners when Aurora Home opens for residents later this year.”

Gerry Thiessen, mayor, District of Vanderhoof –

“The District of Vanderhoof is incredibly thankful for the commitment of Northern Health and the Province of B.C. to fund this facility that is built with seniors’ needs as the primary design goal. We are thankful that both these organizations were willing to look outside of the box and build this much-needed facility that is the first of its kind in B.C. As a district, we were pleased to donate the property located in the centre of Vanderhoof, close to parks, shopping and a lot of activity.”

Tyrell Arnold, executive director, Connexus –

“Connexus is thrilled to see this unique home come to fruition. Like many communities, Vanderhoof has a growing demand for more affordable seniors housing. This new building will enhance the community and provide critical housing. It is a truly innovative project which provides not only more affordable housing, but a sense of community and belonging to the downtown. Through partnerships with the District of Vanderhoof, Northern Health, BC Housing and the Centre for Technology Adoption for Aging in the North, we are pleased to have this new building begin operations and are excited to see the innovative eight-bed dementia care pilot project housed in this new facility. This new care model will be a great addition to the continuum of care available to older adults in our region.”

Ahmed Hussen, federal Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion –

“Our government is investing in affordable housing across British Columbia to help create jobs and improve the quality of life for individuals who need it most. This funding will help many Vanderhoof seniors live comfortably with access to dedicated care services and support for many years to come. Thank you to the dedicated staff and caretakers who work tirelessly and with compassion every day. This is the National Housing Strategy at work.”

Kamal Khera, federal Minister of Seniors –

“I’m proud to see results of the National Housing Strategy helping seniors in all corners of the country, bringing relief and well-being to those who have given so much to our society through their knowledge and wisdom. Parkview Place creates a safe and stable environment fostering peace of mind, and allows seniors to age gracefully in their home communities near families and friends. This is close to my heart and I look forward to working with partners across the country to continue to support the needs of our aging citizens.”