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Area Emergency Shelter Gets Ultimate Makeover

Renovations Unveiled at Official Re-Opening Event

COBOURG, Ontario, December 20, 2004 — The only emergency shelter in Cobourg re-opened today after months of renovations. A ribbon-cutting ceremony unveiled the new and improved Transition House, a 22-bed facility that supports single parents, including fathers, who are in need of emergency shelter.

"Transition House is so vitally important to ensuring at-risk individuals and their children have access to emergency shelter and the services required to help them succeed in Cobourg and the surrounding area," said Member of Parliament Paul Macklin on behalf of the Honourable Joe Fontana, Minister of Labour and Housing. "The renovations are a good example of the Government of Canada's commitment to provide shelter to those in need in our community, and ensuring they are safe and comfortable during a difficult time in their lives."

Funding of $193,253 was granted through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation's (CMHC) Shelter Enhancement Program. Ongoing operating funds are provided through a per diem from the Government of Ontario and the County of Northumberland.

"It's always great to see governments, local groups, service agencies, and of course volunteers come together to rescue the most vulnerable, the ones most in need in our communities," said Lou Rinaldi, Member of Provincial Parliament, Northumberland.

"Transition House plays a critical role in assisting those most in need in the Cobourg community," said Mayor and County Warden Peter Delanty. "The renovations to the facility will help those men, women and children who need to access the shelter's services more comfortable during their stay."

Originally opened in December 1999, Transition House moved to its current Chapel Street location in October 2003. This year it underwent extensive renovations in order for the building to meet health and safety standards. The home, formerly owned by a local Cobourg family, has now been fitted with a self-contained fully accessible unit for individuals with physical disabilities, all new windows, a fire escape, wheelchair ramp, new roof, alarm system, a fully accessible kitchen large enough to accommodate a full shelter, and extensive renovations to turn the former attic space into a huge common area.

"On behalf of the Board of Directors, I extend our deepest gratitude to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation for the vital and amazing improvements to Transition House," said Elisabeth Ziegler, Chair of the Board for Transition House. "The renovations to the shelter will benefit homeless Northumberland residents for years to come."

CMHC's Shelter Enhancement Program offers financial assistance for the repair, rehabilitation and improvement of existing shelters for women and their children, youth, and men who are victims of family violence. Funding is also available for the acquisition or construction of new shelters and second stage housing.

CMHC is Canada's national housing agency with a mandate to help Canadians gain access to safe, quality and affordable housing. CMHC supports the Canadian housing industry and improves the living conditions of Canadians through mortgage loan insurance and securitization, assisted housing, research and information transfer and the promotion of Canadian housing exports.

For further information, please contact:

Kathie Howes
Communications Consultant
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Karen Harding
Constituency Assistant,
Lou Rinaldi, M.P.P. Northumberland

Carl Ross,
Director of Community and Social Service,
Northumberland County
(905) 372-6846

Diane Keast,
Program Coordinator
Transition House