TORONTO, Aug. 12, 2022 /CNW/ - Everyone deserves a safe and stable place to call home, but as we've seen recently in communities across our country, far too many Canadians face the daily, unacceptable reality of homelessness, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated the situation for those most vulnerable. The Government of Canada recognizes the collective responsibility we share to act in the face of this emerging crisis.
Today, the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion announced that the Government of Canada has nearly doubled its investments in Reaching Home: Canada's Homelessness Strategy, from over $2 billion over 9 years to nearly $4 billion in federal funding since its launch in April 2019.
This includes over $1.1 billion in new investments through Budgets 2021 and 2022, to further support communities in addressing homelessness for individuals and families across Canada. These investments will provide longer term certainty for the organizations doing vitally important work across the country and ensure that communities across Canada have the support they need to continue their efforts in preventing and reducing homelessness. These are in addition to new contributions by the federal government throughout the pandemic to help address the growing crisis those most vulnerable were faced with.
Overall in the first two years of the program, over 75,000 services were provided to prevent persons from becoming homeless or that helped place them into housing. Reaching Home funding is having an important impact to support services provided by shelters across the country. Reaching Home has also funded education programs, job training programs and social integration activities.
In Toronto, Reaching Home funding, a total of $48.66 million in 2022-23 made up of $25.77 million in base funding and $22.89 million in COVID-19 funding, allowed the City to fund more than 80 projects aimed at preventing homelessness, stabilizing housing or increasing access to housing for people living in Toronto who are at risk of or experiencing homelessness. This includes eviction prevention services, community-based housing help, housing help in shelters, supports with daily living, Indigenous-led services and street outreach year-round, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Reaching Home funding was also used to plan, implement and report out on the results of the 2021 Street Needs Assessment as well as to maintain and extend its homeless sector's COVID-19 response and recovery for people experiencing homelessness.
The Reaching Home program supports the goals of the National Housing Strategy by helping the most vulnerable Canadians maintain safe, stable, and affordable housing and eliminate chronic homelessness across the country.
For individuals or organizations looking for more information on how to access these funding supports or services, please contact your local Community Entity: Infrastructure Canada - Find a community
"Every Canadian deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. Under Reaching Home, the government is investing in the wellbeing of Canadians who are experiencing or at risk of homelessness. We will continue to work with other levels of government, NGOs, Indigenous partners, and communities to increase the availability of safe, inclusive housing options. We know there's more work to do, and by working together, we will build on our work towards eliminating chronic homelessness across Canada."
The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion
"Today, homelessness is a difficult issue, and each and everyone of us deserves a safe home. That is why our Government, through the Reaching Home Program, will continue to work with local partners like Furniture Bank to deliver plans and projects to address priorities that meet the needs of our residents right here in Etobicoke-Lakeshore."
James Maloney, Member of Parliament for Etobicoke-Lakeshore
"The additional Reaching Home funding commitment made by the Government of Canada is another step forward in our collective work to support those experiencing homelessness. I want to thank our federal government partners for their commitment to Reaching Home, which allows our city to continue to invest in programs that are making an impact. We know that more work lies ahead in not only providing housing to those who are vulnerable but in creating more affordable and supportive housing solutions. As a city we continue to do our part, under my leadership the City has committed $7 billion towards incentives to help get affordable housing built. But we know this important work cannot be done alone and we welcome all opportunities to work with other levels of government and our many community partners to deliver new housing supports to residents who need it the most."
His Worship John Tory, Mayor of Toronto
Reaching Home is a community-based program aimed at preventing and reducing homelessness across Canada. This program provides funding and support to urban, Indigenous, territorial and rural, and remote communities to help them address their local homelessness needs.
Funding under this program is allocated to 64 Designated Communities (urban centres), three territorial capitals, 30 Indigenous communities, and rural and remote communities across Canada. The program also makes funding available to Indigenous partners to support distinctions-based approaches to homelessness services.
Through Reaching Home, the Government of Canada has committed nearly $3 billion over 9 years to address homelessness. In addition, $567 million in additional investments over two years, beginning in 2022-23, was announced in Budget 2021.
Budget 2022 proposes to provide an additional $562.2 million over two years, beginning in 2024-25, to maintain Reaching Home's 2023-24 funding levels. This funding will provide longer-term certainty for the organizations doing vitally important work across the country and ensure that communities across Canada have the support they need to continue their efforts in preventing and reducing homelessness.
For fiscal years 2019-20 through 2023-24, nearly $2.2 billion has been allocated to communities through Reaching Home for regionally delivered programming (i.e., through the Designated Communities, Indigenous Homelessness, Rural, and Remote Homelessness, and Territorial Homelessness funding streams).
SOURCE Infrastructure Canada
View original content: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/August2022/12/c6558.html