Purpose Housing Support Program
“Lower-income households, particularly families, face significant imbalances and pressures when accessing rental housing they can afford.”
– CMHC 2021 Rental Market Report
Access to affordable housing is diminishing across Canada, and is particularly scarce in British Columbia and the Metro Vancouver Area. According to reports from the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation, housing in BC has not been considered affordable since 2004. Households receiving average income must now devote nearly 60% of their income to housing, a 15% increase in less than two decades.
In Metro Vancouver alone, 38.4% of renter households lived in unaffordable housing in 2021. Even more concerning, only 1 in 1000 rental units were affordable to households with the lowest 1/5 of incomes, and the majority of these units are considered too small and unsuitable for families. According to a 2021 study from the University of British Columbia, the Vancouver region also has the highest eviction rates in the country at 10.5%, which is more than double the rate in Montreal, and is nearly twice as high as Toronto.
In response to the mounting affordability crisis, the Purpose Society has established the Purpose Housing Support Program through funding from Canada’s Reaching Home initiative. This program focuses on housing loss prevention, and works collaboratively with existing housing and support services available in the New Westminster, Burnaby, Maple Ridge, and Pitt Meadows areas.
The Housing Support Program employs a client-focused approach to prevent housing loss through targeted interventions and community engagement. Our aims are to preserve community connections and attain shelter diversion outcomes, thereby enhancing housing stability and reducing emergency shelter overflow.
Our services and activities include:
Community engagement: We collaborate with community organizations, government resources, and our own internal programs to provide support to individuals and families at risk of homelessness.
Intake and assessment: We meet with clients and service providers directly to assess client circumstances and determine what assistance and support they require.
Short-term financial assistance: We can offer temporary financial support to eligible clients through Canada’s Reaching Home initiative for rent payment, rental arrears, utilities, and other housing expenses.
Client Support: We work with our clients to help them overcome barriers and achieve individualized goals relating to housing, financial stability, and personal wellbeing. Our services include system navigation assistance, referrals to third party advocacy organizations, and ongoing follow-up.
If you wish to apply, make a referral, or have any questions regarding the Housing Support Program, please contact one of our Housing Case Managers with the information below:
Sam Kass – Housing Case Manager