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New Assisted Living Units Open for Victoria Seniors

VICTORIA, British Columbia, June 19, 2007 — The Cridge Centre for the Family, along with Lieutenant Governor Iona Campagnolo, all three levels of government and community partners celebrated today the official opening of The Cridge Village Seniors’ Centre, 77 new assisted living homes for Victoria seniors.

"Canada's New Government is committed to providing real housing solutions for seniors, so that they can continue to live in their communities and be close to family and friends,” said the Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, on behalf of the Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development. "Seniors in Victoria now have more access to quality, affordable housing to meet their specific needs.”

Forty of the units are funded under Independent Living BC (ILBC), an innovative housing-for-health program managed by the Province in partnership with the Government of Canada. The new units have been built in and adjacent to the historic Taylor Building (circa 1896) which was renovated and seismically upgraded. A new three-storey wood-frame building was also built as an addition to the Taylor Building.

“Providing our aging population with more housing and care options is a priority,” said the Honourable Ida Chong, Minister of Community Services and Minister responsible for Seniors’ and Women’s Issues. “Seniors should have the opportunity to access safe and affordable housing in their own communities. The Cridge Village Seniors’ Centre is a great example of a non-profit group working in partnership with government to ensure this.”

Assisted living homes are self-contained apartments where residents receive 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. The Vancouver Island Health Authority will provide subsidies for the hospitality component and funding for the personal care services.

“Assisted living offers a more tailored approach to addressing seniors’ housing and personal care needs,” said Jac Kreut, Board Chair, Vancouver Island Health Authority. “The combination of housing, support services and health care is an example of what we can accomplish by working together and provides the opportunity to enhance the quality of life for our seniors.”

Added Victoria Mayor Alan Lowe, “These new assisted living units will have a positive impact on the Victoria community by offering seniors the opportunity to age in the neighbourhood they call home, close to family and friends.”

The new development is owned and managed by The Cridge Centre for the Family, B.C.’s oldest non-profit society who has been providing a range of services for children and families in Greater Victoria since 1873.

“At 134 years of age and plenty of experience behind us, we are excited to add this seniors’ residence to the family of services we offer to Victoria,” said Gregory Cran, president of The Cridge Centre’s board of directors. “With the highly valued contribution of our federal, provincial and local partners, we look forward to the next 100 years with a renewed sense of purpose and anticipation.”

These new units are part of the British Columbia government’s commitment to provide 5,000 net-new residential care beds, assisted living units, and supportive housing with home support units by the end of 2008. To date, 8,494 new and replacement beds and units have been built, including 3,196 net-new.

The Province of British Columbia is committed to providing more than 4,000 affordable assisted living apartments for B.C. seniors and persons with disabilities. To date, more than 3,900 have been allocated in communities across the province. The Province’s budget for shelters and affordable housing is $328 million — nearly triple what it was in 2001.

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 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.

Contact:

Laura Kohli
Corporate Communications
BC Housing
Telephone: 604-439-8583
Cellular: 604-805-4960

Suzanne Germain
Vancouver Island Health Authority
250-370-8270

Megan Shaw
Communications
CMHC
604-737-4032

Shelley Morris
The Cridge Centre for the Family
250-995-6403

Backgrounder

The Cridge Village Seniors’ Centre

The Cridge Village Seniors’ Centre, at 1307 Hillside Avenue in Victoria, houses 77 units of assisted living (six two-bedroom and 71 one-bedroom suites). Forty of the units are funded under the Independent Living BC (ILBC) program. All the assisted living units in the three-storey wood frame building are designed to be wheelchair accessible to accommodate aging in place. The Centre opened to residents in November 2006.

The Cridge Village Seniors’ Centre is located next to the society-run daycare, which encourages intergenerational activities and provides for volunteer opportunities for residents. Walking paths, suitable for scooters and wheelchairs, are located throughout the property. The Centre includes a grand lounge, library, coffee bistro, an historical display that pays tribute to the legacy of the Centre, as well as health and wellness activity and Internet rooms. A chapel, suitable for spiritual reflection, is also located in the building and doubles as a movie theatre.

Residents in the 40 ILBC homes will pay 70 per cent of their after-tax income for their suites. In exchange they will receive two meals a day, weekly housekeeping and laundry services, recreational programs, assistance with medications, mobility and other care needs, and a 24-hour response system.

The Cridge Centre for the Family

Formed in 1873, The Cridge Centre for the Family is British Columbia’s oldest registered and continuously operating non-profit society. It was originally named the B.C. Protestant Orphans’ Home and was a 100-bed residence designed to protect and house orphans in the Victoria area.

In the 1960s, the society took on its new name and changed its program of activities from an institution that cared for children without families to an organization offering support to families. The orphanage was converted into a childcare centre and new townhouses built for families in economic crisis.

Today, including The Cridge Village Seniors’ Centre, the Cridge Centre for the Family operates Hill House Transition House for women and children escaping relationship violence; Macdonald House providing housing and supports for men who are survivors of acquired brain injuries; childcare programs for children ages 6 months to 12 years including a specialized program at VicHigh for young parents; respite and respitality programs for families with special needs children; and supportive transitional housing for families moving from crisis to stability.

Partners and Funding

Total capital cost of this project is approximately $15,844,450 of which $8.02 million is for the 40 ILBC units.

  • The Cridge Centre for the Family has provided $1,250,000 in cash and the land valued at $1,635,000 and will carry the balance of the mortgage on the project.
  • The federal government, through CMHC, will provide approximately $1 million towards the capital costs under the Affordable Housing Initiative. CMHC will also provide an additional capital grant through the RRAP program of $360,000, and $230,045 from the RRAP Disability Fund.
  • The province, through BC Housing will provide approximately $4.4 million over 35 years for the 40 ILBC-funded units (interim construction financing was provided for all 77 units).
  • The Victoria Heritage Fund contributed a $50,000 grant toward the project.
  • The City of Victoria provided a grant of $16,500.
  • Vancouver Island Health Authority is providing funding for hospitality services in the amount of $312,240 annually for the 40 ILBC units, as well as funding for personal care services.

News source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)

 

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