The Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD) in partnership with the City of Courtenay and the Coalition to End Homelessness has been awarded over one million dollars in grant funding towards projects dedicated to providing urgent and temporary support to unsheltered homeless populations and addressing related community impacts in the region. The funding is being administered by Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM) on behalf of the Province and the Government of Canada’s Safe Restart program.

The Coalition to End Homelessness has identified a number of activities that are required in the community in order to bridge the gap in support services between the COVID-19 outbreak and the post-COVID recovery period. These key priority actions include:

  • Creating an additional emergency overnight shelter.
  • Increasing capacity of Connect (a day program that provides a safe, welcoming space for individuals experiencing homelessness).
  • Hiring additional community outreach workers.
  • Undertaking public engagement and community outreach to educate and increase awareness on homelessness; offsetting costs related to bylaw enforcement during the pandemic (i.e. abandoned camp cleanups, garbage pick-up).
  • Building capacity and providing training for local government staff who provide frontline  services in bylaw, public works, and recreation.

“We are thrilled to receive this grant funding as it will help address the urgent and immediate needs of our community’s unsheltered homeless population and the related community health and safety challenges that we continue to face” explains CVRD Board Chair Jesse Ketler. “By working in partnership with the City of Courtenay and the Coalition to End Homelessness we hope to strengthen our available supports and connections within the Comox Valley.”

For more information on this project visit: www.comoxvalleyrd.ca/scsgrant

Alana Mullaly

General Manager of Planning and Development Services