Fraser Valley – On Thursday, the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister for Families, Children and Social Development, announced that the Government of Canada designated Chilliwack and Abbotsford as two of the six new communities selected to receive funding to prevent and reduce homelessness under the Designated Communities stream of Reaching Home: Canada’s Homelessness Strategy.
Chilliwack Mayor Ken Popove said in a statement: We were excited to learn of our successful application to become a “Designated Community”. This means that Chilliwack will be receiving $1.7 million in funding over the next four years to prevent and reduce homelessness in Chilliwack.
In its first year, the Chilliwack will receive $296,000; this will increase to $473,000 annually in subsequent years. The City of Chilliwack will manage these funds and establish a community advisory board to support local decision making on how funds will be allocated, in accordance with community priorities and a community plan. Part of the funding will also be used to design and implement a coordinated intake process for individuals and families who are experiencing or at-risk of homelessness by 2021-22.
The Abbotsford numbers are $399,304 for 2020-21, and then $635,204 until 2024.
This the first time Chilliwack and Abbotsford have been made eligible for any type of stable, long-term federal funding to fight homelessness. The other Canadian locations are Cochrane District (Timmins), ON, Lambton County, ON, Cowichan Valley, B.C. and Kenora, ON.