CMHA ANWR began buzzing with excitement on January 1st, and the buzzing hasn’t stopped. “Why,” you ask? Because we’ve received full funding and will be responsible for overseeing permanent supportive housing at the Parkside Inn! This program is a part of both the Grande Prairie Five Year Plan to End Homelessness, and the provincial plan to end homelessness, and will play a critical role in ending the 56 identified cases of chronic homelessness in our city. It goes without saying that we feel immense pride at the prospect of being a part of such a plan.
What is Permanent Supportive Housing?
From the City of Grande Prairie Website: “Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH) is a form of collective housing designed for complex needs individuals experiencing homelessness that offers full-time, on-site support services for tenants. It helps end the experience of chronic homelessness for people who face barriers to housing due to mental/physical health problems or addictions. These services can include case management, substance abuse or mental health counseling, advocacy, and assistance in locating and maintaining employment.”
Why Do We Need PSH?
PHS is proven to be an important part of ending the problem of chronic homelessness. It is used in many cities across our nation. In fact, Grande Prairie is the only city out of the 7 dealing with housing and homelessness that does not have a facility! Permanent supportive housing is shown to significantly improve the lives of people living with chronic homelessness both mentally and physically. People who live in PSH facilities experience fewer medical emergencies and therefore don’t rely heavily on emergency medical services. We also see a decrease in confrontations with police, and an increase social activity and participation.
A Brighter Future for Grande Prairie
The CMHA is dedicated to creating a bright future! We believe that it is possible to create better lives for every person that is a part of our community and that programs like PSH are the way to do it. Just imagine: a bustling city where everyone has a chance to do succeed and live their best life. Doesn’t that sound incredible? We think so, too.
Check the City of Grande Prairies website for more details: http://www.cityofgp.com/index.aspx?page=3266