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Affordable Seniors Assisted Living Opens in Saanich

SAANICH, British Columbia, October 11, 2006 — Legion Manor Victoria, a new assisted living development for seniors, celebrated its official opening today with representatives from the federal and provincial governments, Lt. Governor Iona Campagnolo, and other community partners.

Legion Manor Victoria, located in Central Saanich, offers 68 units of affordable assisted living. The Province, through the Independent Living BC (ILBC) program will provide funding of up to $142,500 annually for the 25 ILBC suites, and the Vancouver Island Health Authority will provide subsidies for hospitality and personal care services to help residents to continue to live independently.

"Canada's New Government is proud to help provide seniors with the support and services they need to continue to live independently in their communities, close to family and friends," said the Honourable Gary Lunn, Minister of Natural Resources Canada, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development. "We are proud to be a partner in making more quality, affordable housing a reality for seniors in Saanich."

"We're committed to providing our seniors with more affordable housing options," said the Honourable Murray Coell, MLA for Saanich North and the Islands. "Seniors want to continue living in their own communities, so we're encouraging the building of facilities like this, and partnering with non-profit groups, which allow them to live comfortably, safely and affordably."

The South Vancouver Island Zone Housing Society spearheaded the project and is financing the capital costs. Assisted living units are self-contained apartments where hospitality and personal care services such as meals, housekeeping and laundry services, recreational opportunities, assistance with medications, mobility and other care needs, as well as a 24-hour response system, are available to residents when needed.

"Unique partnerships made this assisted living development a reality," said Dave Sinclair of the South Vancouver Island Zone Housing Society. "Our Society worked hard to secure our own capital funding and worked with government to create affordability in the rents for a portion of these apartments."

"While some seniors need ongoing professional nursing care, the vast majority of seniors do not want or need 24-hour care in a hospital setting," said VIHA board member Brenda Nunns Shoemaker. "Assisted living adds to the range of housing and care options currently available, and better suits a growing population of seniors who are able to remain living in the community if the right supports are available."

The Province of British Columbia, through the Independent Living BC program, is committed to providing more than 4,000 affordable assisting living apartments for B.C. seniors and persons with disabilities.

The Government of Canada, through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, will contribute more than $130 million by 2010 towards affordable housing in this province. The provincial government, through BC Housing, will provide a minimum of $34 million annually to subsidize the cost of units built under the Canada – BC Affordable Housing Agreement, as part of a larger strategy to provide a range of housing options for British Columbians in greatest need.

Media Inquiries:

Christina Wensley
Communications — CMHC
604 737-4032

Dave Sinclair
South Vancouver Island Zone Housing Society
250 727-7818
Larisa Saunders
Communications — BC Housing
604 439-4757
604 505-4156 (cell)
Suzanne Germain
Communications
Vancouver Island Health Authority
250 370-8270

Backgrounder

Legion Manor — South Vancouver Island Zone Housing Society

Legion Manor Victoria, located at 7601 E. Saanich Road, is a new assisted-living development with 68 mobility accessible units situated in a five-acre, park-like setting with walkways and benches. The building includes a library, private dining room (for family visits), woodworking shop, game room, craft shop, a barber and beauty shop and wellness clinic. The South Vancouver Island Zone Housing Society also manages the 77-unit J.O Anderson Annex, located adjacent to the new development.

The South Vancouver Island Zone Housing Society was formed in 1974 to assist lower-income veterans and seniors obtain affordable housing. The society has connections with Royal Canadian Legion branches throughout southern Vancouver Island.

Partners and Funding