Calgary is an acknowledged expert in homelessness research and programming to end homelessness. Since the Plan to End Homelessness was launched in 2008, much has been accomplished.
We have slowed the growth in homelessness despite experiencing a major flood, an unprecedented economic downturn, decreased vacancy rates and a major shortage of affordable housing – a remarkable feat given that our population also grew by more than 217,000 people from 2009 – 2013.
Close to 8,000 people have been housed and our capacity to assist has resulted in more than 2,000 spaces operated by 56 programs.
Investment by the Government of Alberta
Unprecedented levels of support and leadership from our provincial partners has boosted housing opportunities. Almost $45 million in annual program funding, as well as capital grants to create over 2,700 more affordable housing units have been committed, with over 50% of these units already on stream.
Investment by the Government of Canada
The Government of Canada has prioritized investment in Housing First to address chronic and episodic homelessness over the next 5 years. This reinforces Calgary’s ongoing success and allows for predictable funding of approximately $8.3 million annually for fiscal 2017 and 2018, reverting back to $6.3 million for 2019 and beyond.
Private Sector Collaboration
Calgary’s RESOLVE Campaign, first of its kind in Canada capital campaigns, is a collaboration among nine partners, raising $120 million from the private sector to build affordable and supportive housing for 3,000 vulnerable and homeless Calgarians.
In addition, private-sector landlords provided many of the 6,000 service participants housed with a home in Calgary’s rental market.
Coordinated System of Care and Common Information System
30 agencies and 90 programs are now sharing data on a common information system (HMIS) regarded as one of the best of its kind internationally. HMIS provides Calgary data on which to make evidence-based decisions. Agencies use common intake processes and metrics to benchmark service impact and quality to improve service participant outcomes and community impact.
We have the plan, and the momentum, to continue building on this success.