Permanent supportive housing has been proven to break the cycle of homelessness.
Through our $20 million commitment to a partnership with the Province of BC and the City of Vancouver, Streetohome has helped fund nearly 950 units of supportive housing on eight city-owned sites across Vancouver. By the end of 2013, seven of these eight sites were either open or under construction, including two buildings that opened this past year. Marguerite Ford Apartments (215 West 2nd Ave) now provides 147 units of supportive housing for people with mental health and addictions issues, while 1249 Howe Street offers 110 housing units with support services for people living with HIV/AIDS. Streetohome’s contribution to Howe Street was made possible in large part because of the generosity of BMO Bank of Montreal. The bank’s $1 million gift was celebrated through the opening of BMO Garden in the building, in honor of World AIDS Day 2013.
One of the other city-owned sites, Sanford Apartments, celebrated its one year anniversary in 2013. BC Housing did a comprehensive evaluation of tenant outcomes in the building and found that 89% of tenants were still living in Sanford Apartments, and of those that left, only one person returned to homelessness. This mirrors other supportive housing projects that have an 85-90% success rate.
Read the story of Adeline, a waitress at a popular family restaurant for 21 years. When her mental health deteriorated, she lost her job and ended up sleeping on a couch in an office building. After moving into Sanford Apartments (a Streetohome-funded building), Adeline found a home and support that enabled her to plan for her future.
Another Streetohome project, Atira’s Container Housing, opened in 2013, providing 12 units of housing for women who were homeless or at risk of homelessness. This project, built from recycled shipping containers, is the first social housing project of its kind in Canada.
As of 2013, Streetohome began fundraising on a project-by-project basis, starting with three exciting new projects. They include a faith-based collaboration to house homeless people in their own neighbourhood, a mixed-income building with supportive housing for women-led couples and the redevelopment of a municipal fire hall to provide housing for single moms and their children. These housing developments will create 103 new units and help an additional 200 individuals on the street and in shelters to come home. Find out more about these projects and others.