New Pilot Project to Support Veterans
By A Correspondent
To further support Canadians who have dedicated themselves to serving their country, the Government is launching the Transitional Housing and Supports for Homeless Veterans pilot project to help veterans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. The announcement was made today by the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs.
“The Government is committed to supporting Canadian veterans that stood up for our great country,” said Minister Finley. “By working with community organizations across Canada, we are aiming to make a positive difference in the lives of those who have served our country. Our government will always stand up for our veterans, and together with all Canadians, we will never forget their service and sacrifice.”
“This pilot project complements existing programs to expand our reach to help homeless veterans get the care and benefits they need and deserve,” said Minister Finley. “Today’s announcement is yet another example of our government's continued commitment to improving the lives of veterans and their families.”
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, through the Homelessness Partnering Strategy, is providing over $1.9 million in funding for this project and Veterans Affairs Canada is providing in-kind contributions totaling $1.85 million.
“The Alberta government is committed to helping military veterans who are in transition to find appropriate housing,” said Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths. “These men and women have served our country with pride. Now, it is time to repay our debt of gratitude to them, which is why our government is proud to provide $1.8 million toward the purchase of a facility for this project.”
“As Canadians, we have an obligation to support the men and women who have served our country and fallen on hard times,” said Tim Richter, President and CEO, Calgary Homeless Foundation. “We’re thrilled to partner with the Government of Canada and the Government of Alberta and be part of this new national project to house and support homeless Canadian veterans and uphold our duty of care.”
This pilot project is based on a successful program that was launched in the United Kingdom, where the government provides support that is based on veteran-centred principles. A key component of the project is a focus on providing a structured, military-like environment in the housing facilities. Central to this environment includes the implementation of peer support, where veterans use their experience to help other veterans.
"The Royal Canadian Legion applauds the launching of this much needed pilot project.This is an opportunity for the Government to establish long-term collaborative partnerships with existing programs like the Legion's national homeless veterans program, Leave the Streets Behind, as well as Cockrell House in Victoria," said Gord Moore, Dominion President of The Royal Canadian Legion.
"This initiative is far more than just putting a roof over the heads of homeless veterans, it is about providing more lasting, meaningful support for those veterans most in need," concluded Minister Blaney.
This important partnership project is being carried out in four cities across Canada: Toronto, Ontario; London, Ontario; Calgary, Alberta; and Victoria, British Columbia.