Permanent Supportive Housing
Permanent supportive housing links permanent, affordable housing with flexible, voluntary support services that assist with housing retention and independent living. It is an evidence-based and cost-effective solution for people experiencing homelessness with complex needs, such as: mental illness, developmental disabilities, physical disabilities, substance use disorders, and chronic health conditions.
Permanent supportive housing is a critical need for members of our community experiencing homelessness with complex needs.
In 2016, the Guelph & Wellington Task Force for Poverty Elimination and the County of Wellington made a strategic decision to co-lead a local initiative under the umbrella of the national 20,000 Homes Campaign (now Built for Zero) to end chronic homelessness in Guelph-Wellington.
Under the banner of Built for Zero, now led by the County of Wellington, our community has made considerable progress on preventing and ending homelessness, but a lack of permanent supportive housing is the biggest barrier to greater impact.
Background on our community’s efforts:
In 2019, City of Guelph Mayor Cam Guthrie struck a Task Force on Homelessness and Community Safety. As advocated for by the Poverty Task Force, the top recommendation for action was permanent supportive housing for individuals experiencing homelessness with complex needs. As shared in the Mayor’s State of the City address, a group, including the Poverty Task Force, was reconvened in 2020 under the umbrella of the Mayor’s Task Force to discuss how to move forward on this issue. As part of this work, the Poverty Task Force has coordinated community efforts to develop an action-oriented plan to meet this critical community need. With the support of the Mayor’s Task Force, community partners and the work of the Poverty Task Force, our community has reaffirmed its commitment to do what it takes to create permanent supportive housing and end homelessness in Guelph-Wellington by 2023.
With widespread community support from all levels of government across party lines, health and housing sector leaders, local funders, community members and key players from the non-profit, public, and private sectors significant progress has already been made, with cross-sectoral partnerships developed and three new supportive housing projects underway.
- For information about permanent supportive housing, need in Guelph-Wellington, and our community’s plan to create permanent supportive housing to help end homelessness read our Information Sheet (June 2020).
- To learn more about Kindle Communities’ permanent supportive housing development in the Willow Area visit their website.
- To learn more about Stepping Stone’s Grace Gardens permanent supportive housing conversion project at the Parkview visit their website.
- To learn more about Wyndham House’s Bellevue supportive housing project visit their website.
The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us that big change is possible if the will to make it happen exists. Ending homelessness and addressing the housing crisis in our community is not only the right thing to do, it’s possible with community support from people like you! Visit our Yes in My Backyard (YIMBY) campaign and sign-up to learn more about how you can help.