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Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS)


The United Way Central and Northern Vancouver Island funds project initiatives through the federal government's Homelessness Partnering Strategy program.

The Canadian Homeless Research Network has developed definition that clarifies homelessness. For more information on that definition visit The Homeless Hub.

As the Community Entity, the United Way, in collaboration with a local Community Advisory Board (CAB), oversees project funding in the amount of $569,287 granted to organizations that help tackle homelessness issues with these priorities:

Priority 1: Improved and increased access to supportive services for all homeless and at-risk populations using a coordinated approach.

Priority 2: An expanded and enhanced housing continuum that responds to the diverse needs of the homeless and at risk populations, with a focus to increase the stock of low barrier, supportive and transitional housing.

Priority 3: An integrated and coordinated information management system permitting easy data collection, compilation, analysis, reporting, and community coordination and community planning assessment and preparation.


Homelessness Partnering Strategy highlights 

Cold Wet Weather Shelter
A shelter that provides people who are homeless a safe place to sleep through the winter. This shelter was at maximum capacity all winter. 

Nanaimo Region John Howard Society
The Nanaimo Region John Howard Society provides safe transitional housing for 16 adult males recovering from addiction issues and helps them transition to an independent lifestyle. The houses are located near public transit and with easy access to local entry-level job opportunities. 

Nanaimo Women's Resources Society
The Turning the Key program helps women transition from homelessness to maintaining long term housing and quality of life. 

Tillicum Lelum Aboriginal Friendship Centre
The Aboriginal Young Mothers Supportive Housing Program was developed in response to an identified need by Tillicum Lelum (in Nanaimo), the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) and Island Health (VIHA). Modeled on programs in Vancouver and Victoria, this program's focus is to reduce homelessness and the risk of homelessness for young mothers. Program staff will assist residents in developing personal action plans that will include securing permanent, safe and affordable housing. United Way began to administer this program in January 2013. Read Wendy's story, who lived in the Young Mothers Supportive House

Duncan Aboriginal Hiiye 'yu Lelum Society
Support services are available to urban Aboriginal individuals who are at imminent risk of homelessness, including a breakfast program and access to shower and laundry facilities. 


Latest Homelessness Counts

Homelessness Partnering Strategy will fund homelessness counts Nanaimo and in several B.C. cities in 2018. Check back for updated data.

Here are the latest reports:  

Cowichan Valley Summer - August 2017

Cowichan Valley Winter - March 2017

Comox Valley - March 2018

Nanaimo Spring - April 2018 

Port Alberni - April 2018


Community Action Plans

Homelessness Partnering Strategy also funds long-term plans for change in communities. United Way convenes policymakers, social service agencies and local stakeholders in homelessness coalitions to develop action plans. 

Here is the latest plan:

Nanaimo's Action Plan to End Homelessness (2018-2023)

Cowichan Valley Regional District's Plan to Address & Prevent Homelessness (April 2018)


Housing First

In Nanaimo, United Way has partnered with other social service agencies, the Nanaimo RCMP, Corrections Canada, BC Housing, Island Health, the Ministry of Social Development & Social Innovation and the City of Nanaimo. This partnership developed the Housing First program to help the most chronic homeless get into market rent apartments. 

Click here to learn more about specific HPS Aboriginal Communities, including statistics on the Aboriginal population demographics in Nanaimo and Duncan.

Read the HPS Project Results Summary for Nanaimo (2014).

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