We all know Grande Prairie has a homelessness crisis. We, at CMHA, realized that something needed to be done years ago. So, we have been working tirelessly toward a solution. We strongly believe that to be mentally healthy, you need a safe and warm place to live. Our vision is to build a new apartment building. We are getting so close! Five years ago, in preparation for erecting a large apartment building, we purchased two lots across from Rotary House in Grande Prairie. We have overcome many hurdles toward this build. However, we have not been able to secure sufficient funding to kick-start this thirteen-million-dollar project. This is largely due to political party changes. We realize our dream is a lengthy undertaking. Since it may take another few years, we have decided to start smaller.
Next year, we plan to build a smaller apartment building. CMHA ANWR owns the house right beside Willow Place where we plan to develop. (Willow Place is a fifty-seven-unit CMHA ANWR owned and operated apartment building).
Sodo EFG Architecture has been a huge donor and supporter of CMHA from the start of our new apartment building journey. Together with them, we will build a new thirty-two-unit apartment building. There is always a waiting list for apartments at Willow Place. Our aim with this building expansion is to build a stronger community to support mental health in our region. We are currently in the process of demolishing the old house beside Willow Place in preparation for the spring construction of our new building.