A new supportive housing centre has opened at 396 14th Street West in Owen Sound. This centre brings a much needed service to our community, providing stability and services in a safe environment so individuals and families can develop the skills and access the supports they need to live independently.
What is supportive housing?
Supportive housing is an innovative approach to addressing homelessness and improving the well-being of vulnerable individuals and families. It combines affordable housing with essential support services for people who are experiencing homelessness, struggling with mental health issues, or facing other challenges. It offers a stable and secure place to live, coupled with individualized services to address underlying issues and empower residents to regain their independence. Supportive housing is not just a place to live; it's a holistic solution that helps people regain their independence and rebuild their lives.
Key components of supportive housing
Affordable: Supportive housing provides affordable living options, ensuring that residents can maintain their housing stability through rent subsidies and income-based payments.
Support services: It offers a range of essential services, including mental health counseling, substance abuse treatment, employment assistance, and case management, designed to address individual needs.
Community integration: Supportive housing is integrated within existing communities, fostering social inclusion and interaction, reducing stigma, and creating a sense of belonging for residents.
Supportive housing not only transforms the lives of residents but also contributes to the overall well-being of our community.
Reduced homelessness: Supportive housing helps individuals transition from temporary shelters or unsheltered homelessness into permanent homes.
Cost savings: Supportive housing leads to cost savings for communities by reducing the use of emergency services and hospitals. Studies have shown that residents of supportive housing are 64% less likely to access ambulance services compared to individuals in a traditional shelter. In addition, hospital stay lengths are on average 50% lower for a transitional housing tenant versus someone in a traditional shelter system.
Enhanced safety: It enhances safety by proactively addressing potential issues through case management and security measures.
Stronger communities: Supportive housing promotes community and social connections, breaking down stereotypes and misconceptions about homelessness and mental health.
About the 14th Street West centre
The building at 396 14th Street West was purchased by Grey County in 2022. Renovations were completed to create twelve independent living units, administration space, and shared programming area.
What are the units like?
The units have been designed to not only provide necessities, but to help develop life skills and promote long term independent living. Units are set up as studio apartments, each with a living space, kitchenette, bathroom, and laundry.
What supports will be offered at the site?
- Short-term supportive housing up to two years
- On-site mental health and addictions support
- Skills training including cooking, housekeeping, managing finances, and how to connect with community social resources
- Health and wellness support
- Connections with Grey County Housing staff
Who is eligible to live there?
This centre is for residents of Grey County who are transitioning from homelessness or the shelter system who are not yet ready to live independently. Grey County and local community partners identify potential residents and match them with supports to provide the highest chance of successful housing.