Yellowknife Housing First
Housing First approaches to homelessness provide access to housing as a first intervention, without requiring that individuals maintain sobriety or otherwise demonstrate that they are housing ready.” (Stock, M, 2016).
The core principles of housing first are:
- Immediate access to permanent housing with no housing readiness requirements
- Consumer choice and self-determination
- Recovery orientation
- Individualized, recovery-oriented and client-driven supports
- Social and community integration
The Yellowknife Housing First Program began in September of 2016, and reached our goal of supporting twenty participants in December 2017. Our program staff consists of one team lead and three service coordinators. Program staff are responsible for assisting clients with finding and moving into their new apartment, assisting with furnishing, income support and insurance arrangements, and goal setting. Program staff meet with housing first participants in their homes at minimum once per week, and assist participants with accessing appointments and other needs that they need assistance to meet. Participants in the program also have 24-hour access to a staff member on rotating on-call, to be contacted in case of emergency.
Individuals interested in the Yellowknife Housing First Program, or who would like to arrange donations of furniture or other items, can contact the Housing First Team Lead at (867) 447-4661.
The Next Step/Rapid Rehousing Program supports individuals who are ready to take on the responsibility of being a tenant, but who may struggle to find an apartment due to poor credit, past arrears or any other issues that may raise a concern for a landlord. The program works directly with both tenants and landlords to identify and address concerns surrounding tenancy, and guarantees payment of rent (and in worst case scenarios, any damages incurred) for six to twelve months while the tenant learns their roles and responsibilities within the landlord/tenant relationship.