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Homeless Youth Benefit From Shelter Expansion

TORONTO, Ontario, January 23, 2007 — Youth Without Shelter celebrated the unveiling of its new, expanded 50-bed shelter that will benefit hundreds of youth in crisis. The Etobicoke shelter provides short-term housing, support programs and referral services for homeless youth 16 to 24 years of age.

Youth Without Shelter purchased a building next to its existing facility and built a link between the two buildings. The addition has enabled Youth Without Shelter to initiate a 20-bed Stay in School program.

The expansion project received more than $2.5 million from Canada’s New Government, including $2.3 million from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s (CMHC) Shelter Enhancement Program and $237,200 from the Supporting Communities Partnership Initiative (SCPI), administered by the City of Toronto. Additional funding is from corporate and community supporters, as well as the Government of Ontario and the City of Toronto, who will contribute $930,000 annually in operating funding, up from about $562,000 before the expansion.

“Canada's New Government is proud to work with Youth Without Shelter to make a real difference in the lives of vulnerable youth,” said the Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development. “Projects like this will provide many homeless youth in Toronto with safe housing, and give them hope, dignity and a path to a more secure future."

"The expansion of this shelter enhances Toronto's ability to help young people get a fresh start in life," said Toronto Mayor David Miller. "I'm pleased the federal government is making this investment and others to create opportunities for Toronto's most vulnerable residents."

Youth Without Shelter has helped more than 12,500 homeless youth since opening its doors in 1986. In addition to providing safe, emergency housing, they offer counseling and referral services, teach life and employment skills, assist youth with housing searches, and help younger residents successfully complete their high school education through a Stay in School program with on-site tutoring and a computer lab.

“We are very appreciative of the support from CMHC’s Shelter Enhancement Program and the Supporting Communities Partnership Initiative,” said Wendy Horton, Executive Director of Youth Without Shelter. “Their funding, along with the generous support of our corporate and private donors, has permitted us to expand our facility and complete critically needed renovations. This has allowed us to provide enhanced services to our residents and open an innovative Stay in School Program designed to meet the needs of homeless youth struggling to complete their education.”

The federal government launched the National Homelessness Initiative in December 1999 to support communities’ efforts to help at-risk Canadians out of homelessness. As part of the initiative, the Supporting Communities Partnership Initiative program, administered by partnering municipalities, is continuing to make a difference by encouraging the development of flexible, community-driven solutions to help alleviate homelessness and support those who are at risk of homelessness.

CMHC’s Shelter Enhancement Program offers financial assistance for the repair, rehabilitation and improvement of existing shelters for victims of family violence, as well as the acquisition or construction of new shelters and second stage housing where needed.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has been Canada’s national housing agency for more than 60 years. CMHC is committed to helping Canadians access a wide choice of quality, affordable homes, while making vibrant, healthy communities and cities a reality across the country.

For media inquiries please contact:

Wendy Horton
Executive Director
Youth Without Shelter
416-748-0110 ext. 23

Beth Bailey

Catherine Kaye
Service Canada – Ontario Region

Peggy Byrne
City of Toronto

News source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)


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