Mayors join finance minister to discuss, share feedback on landmark tax

More transitional housing in Prince George will help keep families together

June 19, 2024 at 2:37 pm  BC, News, Politics, Provincial

Mothers from across northern B.C. who are seeking a safe place to stay for themselves and their children will soon have access to 34 new transitional housing units in Prince George, along with parenting and cultural supports.

“These 34 new homes show our government’s commitment to keeping families together and ensuring everyone, no matter how difficult their personal circumstances, has a roof over their head,” said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Housing. “Harmony House is keeping children out of foster care, connecting families with their Indigenous culture, and ultimately giving women the skills and confidence they need to be successful parents.”

Harmony House has 22 transition beds and 12 second-stage housing units for women and gender-diverse people who are at risk of, or have experienced, intimate partner violence in Prince George and surrounding area, and their children. Occupancy is expected to be complete by mid-July 2024.

“These new homes represent fresh starts for women and their children,” said Kelli Paddon, Parliamentary Secretary for Gender Equity. “The program at Harmony House will provide a safe space and culturally appropriate care so that people leaving intimate partner violence can rebuild their lives in a supportive home.”

Operated by the Phoenix Transition Society, the transition house has private bedrooms and bathrooms with a shared kitchen and common spaces. It will function as one large home where families can live for six months to one year. The second-stage housing units are self-contained suites where women and their children can live independently.

Ninety per cent of Harmony House clients are Indigenous women who come from remote communities across northern B.C., so programming is focused on providing culturally appropriate safe care, while preserving cultural knowing and providing life skills that contribute to sustainable changes.

The new building will allow Phoenix Transition Society to expand its current program, which has a long wait list and high demand, to meet the need in the community.

Twenty-one per cent of the units are accessible, and the entire development is designed with universal design principles, recognizing that the space must be functional and inclusive for people of all ages and abilities.

Transition housing provides safe, temporary shelter with supports for those who need a place to stay after leaving a violent or abusive situation. After a stay in a transition house, people can move to second-stage housing before moving to long-term housing in the community. Second-stage housing includes services to help women rebuild their independence, including support groups, system navigation and individualized assistance.

This project is part of a $19-billion housing investment by the B.C. government. Since 2017, the Province has nearly 80,000 homes that have been delivered or are underway, including more than 600 homes in Prince George.

Support for Harmony House furthers the ongoing work under Safe and Supported, B.C.’s gender-based violence action plan.

Quotes:

Alisha Poole, Harmony House resident –

“Harmony House has saved my life.”

Maria Brouwer, strategic operational manager, Phoenix Transition Society –

“Harmony House is a house for women and children. A house to move through trauma to wellness, attachment and bonding. Keeping families together is our aim.”

Quick Facts: 

  • The Province, through BC Housing, provided $12.4 million through the Building BC: Women’s Transition Housing Fund for the project, and will provide $709,000 in annual operating funding.
  • Harmony House is part of a broader community effort to advance reconciliation by keeping families together, connecting women and children with their Indigenous culture, and offering women the skills and confidence they need to be successful parents.
  • Residents of the second-stage home will pay either 30% of their income for rent or, for those receiving income or disability assistance, the provincial shelter rate.
  • Residents in transitional housing will pay the provincial shelter rate.
  • As is generally the case for projects that support women and children leaving intimate partner violence, the address of this project has not been disclosed for safety reasons.
     

Learn More:

In April 2024, the Province, through BC Housing, invited non-profits to qualify as operators of women’s transition housing and supports programs. For more information, visit: https://www.bchousing.org/projects-partners/funding-opportunities/wthf-rfpq

To learn more about government’s new Homes for People action plan, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2023HOUS0019-000436 

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

For more information about Safe and Supported, B.C.’s gender-based violence action plan, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/british-columbians-our-governments/services-policies-for-government/gender-equity/safe-and-supported-gender-based-violence-action-plan-december-2023.pdf

View the full article from the original source

No conversations yet

Activity Stream

Thu, Jul 18, 2024 at 3:38 pm - Darryl Schmidt posted on their blog: Communicating with Local Politicians
Thu, Jul 18, 2024 at 8:00 am - David Suzuki posted on their blog: Great Bear Sea initiative shows vision of Indigenous leadership
Thu, Jul 11, 2024 at 1:34 pm - Darryl Schmidt posted on their blog: Understanding the Role of Politicians in Kamloops
Thu, Jul 11, 2024 at 8:00 am - David Suzuki posted on their blog: The shift to cleaner energy is unstoppable
Mon, Jul 8, 2024 at 12:37 pm - Kamloops Film Society posted on their blog: Now Hiring! – The Kamloops Film Society
Fri, Jul 5, 2024 at 9:19 am - Darryl Schmidt posted on their blog: The Key to Inclusion and Diversity in the Workplace
Thu, Jul 4, 2024 at 8:00 am - David Suzuki posted on their blog: Telling the truth about fossil fuels
Full Stream