Homelessness fund gets a boost for 2013

Andrew
Andrew Robinson
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Seven first-time grant recipients among 17 announced

Efforts to aid those at risk of homelessness received a boost on Monday, as the province announced plans to distribute almost $1.2 million this year among 17 non-profit groups through Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corp.’s (NLHC) provincial homelessness fund.

That figure for the 2013-14 fiscal year represents an increase of nearly 38 per cent over the previous year’s total of $870,000. That money was spread among 10 non-profit organizations.

According to Paul Davis, the minister responsible for the NLHC, the fund will aid those groups that support the wellbeing of clients with complex needs, benefit housing stability and offer outreach services to those at risk of homelessness.

“As we all know, it takes a collaborative effort,” said Davis, speaking Monday at Saint Luke’s Homes in

St. John’s.

“It’s so exciting when I see these types of organizations, events and programs that come from the community and come from the community upwards.”

Of the 17 organizations set to receive a grant through the fund this year, seven are first-time recipients.

“That identifies seven new groups and organizations who have come up with new programs to provide assistance and supports to the people in our communities who need it most,” said Davis.

One of this year’s major beneficiaries through the fund is Anglican Homes Inc., which operates Saint Luke’s Homes, among other properties. It received $200,000 to go towards its plan to create a facility with affordable assisted-living accommodations.

“Thanks to the help of NLHC programs, we are presently planning a 25-unit supportive-living facility,” said Robert Sexty, past-chairman of Anglican Homes Inc.

Sexty said the new facility on Topsail Road will also function as a meeting space for seniors in the west end of St. John’s.

“We plan to follow a wellness and preventative model of care, which will include medical, recreational (and) educational aspects. For example, life-skills classes, wellness programs and visiting medical clinics.”

Other groups set to receive funding this year include Iris Kirby House in St. John’s, the Labrador West Housing and Homelessness Coalition, the Committee on Family Violence in Corner Brook, the Salvation Army in Gander and the Tommy Sexton Centre in St. John’s.

The fund has allocated 64 grants — totalling almost

$5 million — to 43 different groups since 2009, according to the government.

arobinson@thetelegram.com

Twitter: @TeleAndrew

Organizations: Newfoundland and Labrador Housing, Anglican Homes, Iris Kirby House Labrador West Housing and Homelessness Coalition Committee on Family Violence Salvation Army Tommy Sexton Centre

Geographic location: Saint Luke, Topsail Road, Corner Brook Gander

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