Government of Canada/Public Works — July 31, 2012Government of Canada Announces a New Pilot Project to Support Veterans in London
LONDON, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - July 31, 2012) - To further support Canadians who have dedicated themselves to serving their country, the Government of Canada is launching the Transitional Housing and Supports for Homeless Veterans pilot project to help veterans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Susan Truppe, Member of Parliament for London North Centre, highlighted the funding announcement today on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, and the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs.
"The Government of Canada is committed to supporting Canadian veterans that stood up for our great country," said Mrs. Truppe. "By partnering with the Unity Project for Relief of Homelessness to provide essential services to veterans in need, we are doing our part to address veterans' poverty and homelessness in London. Our government will always stand up for our veterans and, together with all Canadians, we will never forget their service and sacrifice."
"Finding the right solutions for homelessness is a London priority," said Mayor Fontana. "This project fits within the Council-approved Community Housing Strategy and Community Plan on Homelessness. London has always shown great respect to our country's veterans and this initiative gives our city the opportunity to continue to provide leadership and innovation in serving their long-term needs."
The Unity Project for Relief of Homelessness is receiving over $304,000 in Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) funding to secure transitional housing and provide support services to veterans to help them stabilize their lives. This is one of four organisations across Canada receiving funding for a pilot project to help veterans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
"Unity Project for Relief of Homelessness, through London CAReS, is very pleased to be working together with the other sites across Canada to develop and evaluate a Canadian model for veterans experiencing homelessness as they transition to stable housing," said Chuck Lazenby, General Manager, Unity Project for Relief of Homelessness. "Through London CAReS, we are supporting 10 local veterans in overcoming many challenges. Providing a home and the needed supports is the foundation for achieving stability."
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, through the Homelessness Partnering Strategy, is providing over $1.9 million in funding for the pilot project and Veterans Affairs Canada is providing in-kind contributions totaling $1.85 million.
This pilot project is based on a successful program that was launched in the United Kingdom, where the government provides support that is based on veteran-centred principles. A key component of the project is a focus on providing a structured, military-like environment in the housing facilities. Central to this environment includes the implementation of peer support, where veterans use their experience to help other veterans.
"The research and evaluation of the Housing First initiative will give us the opportunity to learn from and assist a current group of veterans experiencing homelessness," said Dr. Cheryl Forchuk, Assistant Director, Lawson Health Research Institute and Professor and Associate Director of Nursing Research at Western University in London, Ontario. "It will also allow us to build an evidence database of the best and most promising practices for our veterans across Canada."
This project is being carried out in four cities across Canada: Toronto, Ontario; London, Ontario; Calgary, Alberta; and Victoria, British Columbia.
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Transitional Housing and Supports for Homeless Veterans
The project will be administered by the City of London and is being carried out in four cities across Canada.
- Toronto, Ontario: Mainstay Housing is receiving $405,789 in Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) funding.
- London, Ontario: The Unity Project for Relief of Homelessness in London is receiving $304,948 in HPS funding.
- Calgary, Alberta: The Calgary Homeless Foundation is receiving $539,547 in HPS funding.
- Victoria, BC: Cockrell House is receiving $258,800 in HPS funding.
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) will fund project activities and coordination, including an evaluation to assess the impact of the project interventions on housing stability, self-sufficiency and the integration of homeless veterans into the broader community.
The contribution of Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) will include: management and other support from its head office; clinical support and training from the VAC National Centre for Occupational Stress Injuries and regional clinics located at the pilot sites; as well as case management support from the local VAC offices at the pilot sites.
Community partner organizations are providing services such as meals and local transportation.
The City of London, as project administrator, will monitor and manage project finances for all sites, evaluate the project, and provide regular reports to HRSDC and VAC.
Homelessness Partnering Strategy
The HPS is a unique community-based program aimed at preventing and reducing homelessness by providing direct support and funding to 61 designated communities across Canada.
As of July 16, 2012, 2 049 approved projects totalling over $693 million have been funded under the HPS to prevent and reduce homelessness in Canada.
For more information on the HPS and the seven funding streams, please visit www.hrsdc.gc.ca/homelessness.
Office of Minister Finley
Media Relations Office
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
Media Relations Advisor
Veterans Affairs Canada
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