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Released April 27, 2007



New Affordable Rental Housing Units for Women in St. John’s

In partnership with the federal and provincial governments, the St. John’s Status of Women Council (SJSWC) has expanded its affordable housing stock for women in the City of John’s. Funding of $65,000 has been made available to the SJSWC to renovate their building on Military Road, through the Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program (Rental) which, in Newfoundland and Labrador, is referred to as the Provincial Home Repair Program (PHRP). RRAP/PHRP is a federal/provincial cost-shared program.

Senator Ethel Cochrane, on behalf of the Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, and the Honourable Shawn Skinner, Minister of Human Resources, Labour and Employment and Minister Responsible for Newfoundland Labrador Housing (Housing), made the announcement today.

"Canada's New Government is pleased to work with the province and the non-profit sector to provide funding for projects like this one, that address the need for safe, affordable housing in St. John’s," said Senator Ethel Cochrane. "This joint funding of $65,000 is helping the St. John’s Status of Women Council give women a path to a better and stronger future."

The SJSWC has been providing affordable rental housing for women over the past 10 years through their two-unit facility on Military Road. This funding will make possible the conversion of the main floor into an additional rental unit and will also enable them to complete necessary upgrades and repairs to the two existing units.

"It is very satisfying to be partners in a project that helps provide people with a safe, secure environment," said Minister Skinner. "In the end, such investments contribute significantly to individual dignity and help develop strong, healthy and diverse communities."

"This is an exciting next step for us, since we are transforming the knowledge gained over the last decade of research on women’s homelessness and housing issues into concrete action," said Wendolyn Schlamp-Hickey, Partnership Coordinator, Marguerite’s Place (SJSWC). "Homelessness in St. John’s is largely a hidden problem, particularly among women who are often marginally housed in places that are unsafe, crowded and unclean, or ‘couch-surfing’ in the homes of friends or relatives. The development of our property reflects our commitment to women’s housing, and this funding will allow us to continue our ongoing work of improving housing conditions for women in our city."

The main floor of the Military Road building was formerly home to the St. John’s Women’s Centre and the SJSWC offices; however, given the expansion of programs and staff in the spring of 2006, they relocated to new accommodations at 150 LeMarchant Road.

The Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program provides financial assistance to ensure that housing occupied by low-income households meets basic health and safety standards.

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Media contacts:

Jenny Bowring
Manager, Communications
Newfoundland Labrador Housing
Telephone: (709) 724-3055
jmbowring@nlhc.nl.ca
Wendolyn Schlamp-Hickey
Partnership Coordinator
Marguerite’s Place, St. John’s
Telephone: (709) 754-8500
www.margueritesplace.ca
Dawn Ring
Communications and Marketing Consultant
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
Telephone: (709) 772-5973
dring@cmhc.ca
www.cmhc.ca