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Government of Canada helps Aboriginal people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness in British Columbia

Duncan, British Columbia, September 25, 2012—Aboriginal people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness in Duncan have greater access to food and other support services. This announcement was made today by the Honourable John Duncan, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development.

“Our government is giving a hand up to Canadians to help them meet certain basic needs and break free from the cycle of homelessness and poverty,” said Minister Duncan. “By partnering with the Hiiye’yu Lelum (House of Friendship) Society to provide essential services to people in need, we are doing our part to prevent and address homelessness in the Duncan area.”

“We are grateful for the continuing support of the Government of Canada in this project,” said Debbie Williams, Executive Director, Hiiye’yu Lelum Society. “This funding allows us to reach out and provide much-needed support to people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness in our community.”

Over $87,000 in HPS funding is being used by the Hiiye’yu Lelum (House of Friendship) Society to deliver outreach and breakfast programs. A community outreach worker conducts regular walking tours of local streets and refers people who are homeless to relevant health, social and employment services. In addition, the organization operates a breakfast program that will serve 7 000 nutritious meals to 160 people in need over the course of one year.

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This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

For further information (media only):

Marian Ngo
Office of Minister Finley
819-994-2482

Media Relations Office
Human Resources and
Skills Development Canada
819-994-5559
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Backgrounder

The Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) is a unique community-based program aimed at preventing and reducing homelessness by providing direct support and funding to 61 designated communities across Canada.

The HPS took effect April 1, 2007, with annual funding of $134.8 million for two years. In September 2008, the Government committed to investing more than $1.9 billion in housing and homelessness programs over five years, until March 2014. This includes a renewal of the HPS until March 2014.

As of August 21, 2012, a total of 2 197 approved projects totalling over $721 million were funded under the HPS to prevent and reduce homelessness in Canada.

The HPS provides structures and supports that help people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness achieve self-sufficiency and full participation in society. This model seeks to address homelessness by working in partnership with the provinces and territories, other federal departments, as well as with communities and the private and not-for-profit sectors.

The availability of safe, stable housing and related supports is an important element in addressing homelessness and helping individuals who are homeless achieve greater self‑sufficiency and a better quality of life. The Government’s investments are creating jobs, stimulating local economies and improving the quality of life for many Canadians.

By working with all our partners, we will maximize results to make a lasting difference in the lives of vulnerable Canadians. The HPS provides the support that our community partners are seeking.

The HPS encourages a housing-first approach, recognizing that housing stability is an important first step in addressing homelessness. It is also necessary for the success of other interventions such as education and training, the development of life skills and the management of mental health issues.

For more information on the HPS and the seven funding streams, please visitwww.hrsdc.gc.ca/homelessness.

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