With the opening of 53 new homes on Royal Crescent in the coming weeks, people living in the Anita Place camp, and others experiencing homelessness in Maple Ridge, will be able to transition into new supportive homes and shelter spaces.
The transition will begin on Oct. 18, 2018, with the Province, the City of Maple Ridge and multiple partner agencies working together to make sure people make the move safely and comfortably.
“Our goal is to offer everyone at the Anita Place camp and those who are living on the streets in Maple Ridge a warm and safe place to call home and a chance to rebuild their lives,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. “We continue to witness the life-changing benefits safe housing can provide for people who have been left to struggle alone for far too long.”
The Province is providing a range of new housing and support options, including:
- new temporary supportive housing at 22534 Royal Cres. – 53 new self-contained homes with support services, operated by Coast Mental Health
- a new winter shelter at Maple Ridge Baptist Church – 20 spaces, operated by Hope For Freedom Society
- an additional 40 rent subsidies to help people ready for independent housing to find rental housing in the private market
“Supportive housing has been working well in B.C., and we’ve seen huge benefits go to both the residents and the communities they are in,” said Bob D’Eith, MLA for Maple Ridge-Mission. “I’m confident that Maple Ridge will have the same positive experience, and I’m proud to be part of a government that is making affordable housing and addressing homelessness a priority.”
BC Housing and outreach workers will also be referring campers to shelter spaces opened up by the movement of some residents to the new housing from the 60-bed Salvation Army shelter that is already operating in the community.
“This supportive housing is desperately needed in Maple Ridge and I’m pleased to see it finally opened,” said Lisa Beare, MLA for Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows. “Everyone deserves a safe place to call home. These units will give people experiencing homelessness in our community the stability and support they need to get their lives back on track.”
This transition will take place over a five-day period. Outreach workers from Coast Mental Health, Fraser Health-funded contracted providers and staff from BC Housing and the City of Maple Ridge will be on hand to assist in the move.
Following the local government elections, the Province will also be reaching out to the city about working together to expedite the development and construction of new permanent supportive housing and affordable housing in the community.
Darrell Burnham, CEO, Coast Mental Health –
“Coast Mental Health provides critical housing for the most vulnerable people living in Maple Ridge. We’re filling the gap in the social support system, helping create a safe space for sustained recovery.”
Dr. Ingrid Tyler, medical health officer, Fraser Health –
“The move to modular housing is an important step toward health. As people transition to the new modular housing, we will continue to work closely with the City of Maple Ridge, BC Housing and other stakeholders to ensure we are providing appropriate health services to those who need them.”
- There is a significant need for supportive housing in Maple Ridge. In the last Metro Vancouver homeless count looking at Ridge Meadows, which encompasses Maple Ridge, 124 homeless people were counted. This is an increase of 48% since 2014.
- Coast Mental Health operations of the modular supportive housing complex will include daily meal services, access to mental health and addictions treatment, life-skills programming and participation in a community advisory committee, made up of community members and representatives from the municipality, Fraser Health and BC Housing.
Read Homes for B.C., government’s 30-point plan to address housing affordability for British Columbians: https://www.bcbudget.gov.bc.ca/2018/homesbc/2018_Homes_For_BC.pdf
To find out what the Province is doing to improve housing affordability, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/factsheets/bc-government-addressing-housing-affordability-challenges