The federal government has announced a new supportive home project for people aged 17 to 24.
On Thursday (Dec. 2), the federal Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion Ahmed Hussen, along with Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum, announced the federal government would be allocating $13.8 million for 30 new supportive homes for young people in the city. The funding is through the “Cities Stream,” under the expanded Rapid Housing Initiative.
The funding was initially announced in Surrey in July, but the type of housing was not announced.
“We know that one of the pipelines into homelessness is young people aging out of care,” said Hussen.
The project, located at 13102 112A Ave., will include 30 new homes with 24-7 support for young people, many of whom will be transitioning from government care.
All of the housing units will be allocated to “vulnerable and homeless youth,” with a further breakdown of Indigenous youth, LGBTQ2S+ youth, young women experiencing violence and newcomer youth being allocated 25 per cent of the housing each.
It will be operated Pacific Community Resources Society.
Michelle Shaw, director of operations for Fraser South with PCRS, said for more than 30 years the society has provided “core support services to young people living in Surrey.”
“As one of the largest youth housing providers in BC, we know that ensuring youth, especially those leaving care, have the best start means they have a safe and stable place to live.”
Hussen said this project will “go a long way to support those who need it most by quickly providing 30 new affordable homes for Surrey’s most vulnerable youth populations, to keep them safe.”
A release from the federal government notes the project, which will feature modular construction, is planned to be completed by winter 2022.
McCallum noted that Surrey has the “largest youth population in the province,” and these homes will “ensure that all our young people have the opportunity to thrive.”
In addition, Surrey-Whalley MLA Bruce Ralston announced the provincial government with support the project with annual operating funding.
This is in addition to the Government of Canada’s previous investment of $16.4 million through the Major Cities Stream of the first phase of the RHI to support the creation of up to 44 new affordable homes in Surrey.
The Rapid Housing Initiative is funding by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, under the National Housing Strategy.