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Released January 20, 2009



Lilly Building Project will Provide Housing and Opportunities for Youth

With the support of the federal and provincial governments, Choices for Youth’s Lilly Building Project will fill a significant housing gap within the city by combining 14 safe affordable housing units with on-site support, a basic literacy and math skill program, and an employment preparation program.

The project has received a total of $2.29 million in funding from various federal-provincial initiatives to offset construction costs: under the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Affordable Housing Program, cost-shared 50/50 with the federal and provincial governments, ($900,000), the federal Housing Trust Funds ($680,000), the National Homelessness Initiative ($550,000) and the federal-provincial Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program ($164,000). In addition, the project also received Seed Funding directly from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) to assist during the initial planning stages.

In addition, the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador has invested a further $533,000. The Department of Environment and Conservation is providing $400,000 through the Newfoundland and Labrador Green Fund to address energy efficiency measures being undertaken during project renovation. Also, the Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment is contributing programming funds of $103,000, and the Department of Health and Community Services is contributing $30,000 for employment program costs.

The Honourable Charlene Johnson, Minister of Environment and Conservation, and also on behalf of the Honourable Trevor Taylor, Minister Responsible for Newfoundland Labrador Housing (Housing), and Member of Parliament, Randy Hoback on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development Canada and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), made the announcement today.

"As a province, we recognize that one of our most valuable assets is our youth who are vital to the prosperity and growth of our future," said Minister Johnson. "This project sends a clear message to young people in our community – they are important and we are working to provide them the support that will help them reach their full potential."

The aim of the project is to take a multi-faceted, holistic approach to recurring homelessness by removing lifestyle, housing, educational and employment barriers. Youth will be supported in learning the skills to live independently and securing opportunities to make healthier lifestyles more sustainable. The future vision for the project is to incorporate a social enterprise which would provide youth with much-needed hands-on employment experiences and financial sustainability.

"The Government of Canada is committed to making affordable housing available in Newfoundland and Labrador and across Canada for those who need it most," said Mr. Hoback. "The creation of these units here in St. John’s will provide youth access to safe affordable and quality housing, helping them to build a stronger future."

Since the renovation and construction of the Lilly Building began, in September 2008, 10 youth have been learning valuable construction skills as they work alongside contractors and trades people. These youth were referred to Choices through various programs across the city, received safety and basic construction training at the Carpenters Millwrights College.

"Through all the programs at Choices, we recognize that youth need safe, affordable housing and opportunities to support themselves through employment," said Sheldon Pollett, Executive Director of Choices for Youth. "This new affordable housing facility will enable an extremely vulnerable population of youth to make sustainable long-term changes in their lives."

Once completed, the facility will provide 14, one and two-bedroom apartments, along with programming and office space. One of the apartments will be completely wheelchair accessible.

For more information on these programs:

Homelessness Partnering Strategy: www.homelessness.gc.ca 

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation:
http://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/inpr/afhoce/fias/index.cfm

Newfoundland Labrador Housing: www.nlhc.nf.ca 

Department of Environment and Conservation:  www.env.gov.nl.ca/env/Env/policy%20and%20planning/greenfund.htm

Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment: www.hrle.gov.nl.ca/hrle

Department of Health and Community Services: www.health.gov.nl.ca/health

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Media contacts:

Jenny Bowring
Manager, Communications
Newfoundland Labrador Housing
709-724-3055
jmbowring@nlhc.nl.ca
Melony O’Neill
Director of Communications
Department of Environment and Conservation
709-729-2575, 689-0928
moneill@gov.nl.ca
Dawn Ring
Communications and Marketing Consultant
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
709-772-5973, 709-687-2194
dring@cmhc.ca
http://www.cmhc.ca 
 

BACKGROUNDER

Canada – Newfoundland and Labrador Affordable Housing Agreement

The Canada–Newfoundland and Labrador Affordable Housing Program Agreement involves investments of over $40.9 million in the creation of affordable housing units in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Breakdown of combined contributions of the two governments is as follows:

 

Phase I

Phase II

Federal $15,140,000

$5,310,000

Newfoundland and Labrador $15,140,000

$5,310,000

Totals $30,280,000

$10,620,000

 

Phase I
Objectives:

To increase the supply of affordable housing in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Housing must be affordable for at least 10 years.

Program:

Funding under this agreement will be used for the creation of affordable housing.

Funding is available to private developers and non-profit organizations interested in developing housing for low- to moderate-income families, seniors, non-elderly singles, disabled persons and persons with special needs.

Administration:

The program is administered by Newfoundland Labrador Housing (Housing).

Housing is responsible for the selection of affordable housing projects.

Financial Provisions:

Maximum CMHC funding under the agreement is $15.14 million which was matched by the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador in previous spending.

Funding is available at $35,000 per unit, including federal and provincial dollars.

Phase II
Objectives:

To increase the supply of affordable housing in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Housing must be affordable for at least 10 years.

Program:

Funding under this agreement will be used for the creation of affordable housing.

Funding is available to private developers and non-profit organizations interested in developing projects for low-income families, seniors, non-elderly singles, disabled persons and persons with special needs.

Administration:

The program will be administered by Housing.

Housing is responsible for the selection of affordable housing projects.

Financial Provisions:

Maximum funding under the agreement is $10.62 million which is funded 50/50 by CMHC and the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Funding is available at $100,000 per unit, including federal and provincial dollars.