Province announces millions in funding for social housing units

The Kinew government announced it will fund two, multi-million-dollar housing projects targeting Manitobans experiencing gender-based violence and homelessness.

Housing, Addictions and Homelessness Minister Bernadette Smith said at a news conference Friday the province will spend $2.25 million for the construction of a 15-unit building on Balmoral Street, and over $400,000 annually to ensure rent geared to income rates for its users and wraparound supports.

The project is a second-stage, transitional housing building for Indigenous and newcomer women and families who have experienced gender-based violence. The facility is spearheaded by UWCRC 2.0, a non-profit organization devoted to developing a sustainable university community.

Smith’s connection to the cause is a personal one. She says she and her children accessed social housing about 25 years ago when she experienced gender-based violence.

“I had very little support and I needed housing, and I would have benefitted from this very type of housing that we are announcing today.”

The government is also spending $3 million in capital funding for the Winnipeg Housing Rehabilitation Corporation’s (WHRC) 154-unit, six-storey complex on Transcona Boulevard.

Smith says it will create housing across the spectrum, including 31 rent geared to income units, 15 units at 80 per cent of the median market rent, and 109 market units.

WHRC will also partner with Siloam Mission to offer spaces to those experiencing homelessness who are living with disabilities.

Construction is expected to begin this fall.

The province will also spend about $330,000 annually to fund social housing and supports at the facility.

WHRC executive director James Heinrichs says a dire component of social housing is wraparound supports to help those accessing social housing be successful in moving on to homes of their own.

“I think that really is the goal for all of us, is for people to really be a part of a community and feel part of that, and not be in constant danger or in a crisis situation where they’re not sure where they’re going next.”

The province says as a result of investments from Manitoba Housing, both projects will receive funding in the form of secured, fully forgivable loans for the development of social rental housing units.

View original article here Source