PRINCE RUPERT – Doors and opportunities are now open for people experiencing homelessness who will find a warm, safe home at Crows Nest Lodge, a supportive modular project with around-the-clock staffing.
"Homelessness is an acute issue in our province. These new homes will provide relief to people in Prince Rupert living without shelter, and to families with loved ones in need of support," said Jennifer Rice, MLA for North Coast. "These homes and services will help people regroup and recover, and give them an opportunity to break the cycle of homelessness."
Located at 1450 Park Ave., Crows Nest Lodge features 36 self-contained units, each with a bathroom and kitchenette. Two of the homes are designed for people with disabilities.
“The city is happy to partner and support this new provincially funded facility with wraparound services,” said Lee Brain, mayor, City of Prince Rupert. “Opportunities for people to access meals, training and other programs from one location is going to provide much-needed support for our community’s most vulnerable residents. I want to thank the Province, BC Housing, our MLA and the North Coast Transition Society for working collaboratively together in order to get this project done so quickly.”
The North Coast Transition Society will operate the building and provide residents with 24/7 on-site staff and support services, including meal programs, life and employment skills training, health and wellness support services, and opportunities for volunteer work.
“We are very excited to be able to fill this gap in service. Prince Rupert has been in need of affordable housing options with wraparound support services for such a long time,” said Christine White, executive director, North Coast Transition Society. “Crows Nest Lodge will provide homes to those with the biggest barriers to housing along with the professional support network to increase personal and community stability. For some, taking care of this most basic need can make room for other change. As a community, we all benefit when those facing the biggest challenges are lifted up. Then, we can all feel proud of a place that literally brings people in out of the storms and offers opportunity for greater safety, security, support and ability to meet our fundamental, human needs.”
B.C.-based manufacturer Horizon North was selected by the Province to manufacture the homes in Prince Rupert, and for several other modular projects in B.C., supporting jobs and local economies.
This project brings the number of completed modular supportive homes built throughout the province to close to 1,000. More than 1,000 more are underway as part of the Building BC: Rapid Response to Homelessness program, which is bringing more than 2,000 modular supportive homes to 22 communities.
Residents will begin moving in to the building at the end of March 2019.
- The Province has invested $7.1 million in capital and construction costs and will provide an annual operating subsidy for the project.
- The land for the permanent supportive housing project, valued at $475,000, was provided by the City of Prince Rupert.
- Residents will be charged a monthly rental rate of $375, which is the social assistance shelter allowance provided by the Province to people experiencing homelessness.
- Through the Building BC: Rapid Response to Homelessness program, the Province is investing $291 million to build 2,000 homes around the province and more than $170 million over three years to provide 24/7 staffing and support services.
- The Building BC: Rapid Response to Homelessness program is expected to create more than 2,000 jobs throughout the province, which includes 1,400 direct jobs and another 650 jobs in supplier industries.
Building BC: Rapid Response to Homelessness program: https://www.bchousing.org/partner-services/Building-BC/rapid-response-homelessness
For a map of the modular projects, visit: http://www.bchousing.org/publications/Building-BC-Rapid-Response-Homelessness-Map.pdf
To find out what the Province is doing to improve housing affordability, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/factsheets/bc-government-addressing-housing-affordability-challenges
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
A backgrounder follows.
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
Services and supports provided for modular housing
All new modular housing buildings in the province have 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.
Services and supports provided to young people, seniors, people with disabilities and others who are homeless or in danger of becoming homeless, include:
- 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;
- help accessing income assistance, pension benefits, disability benefits, obtaining a B.C. 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- or off-site.
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing