Alberni’s homelessness plan gets a revamp

Port Alberni's homelessness study, created in 2007, is undergoing a rewrite.

With the 2007 study on how to end homelessness in the Alberni Valley turning seven this year, the Alberni Valley Community Stakeholders Initiative to End Homeless (AVCSI) believes it’s time for an update, Patty Edwards, the constituency assistant to Alberni-Pacific Rim MLA Scott Fraser, told city council during their Jan. 26 meeting.

The AVSCI was first formed in 2007 as a result of a partnership between Fraser’s office and the city council of the day.

A stakeholders meeting was convened in March 2007.

In attendance were representatives from various levels of government, agencies, non-governmental organizations and churches.

“In 2007 we got a small grant from VIHA and we wrote our initial plan [to end homelessness],” Edwards said. “Now seven years later that plan is out of date, a lot of different things have changed, there’s different players so we needed to rewrite the plan.”

The AVSCI applied to the Alberni Valley Foundation to rewrite the plan in 2015.

They called for proposals and chose Amanda Ridgway of IGNITE Consultancy.

“We’re really keen to look at the project in terms of an engagement process,” said Ridgway, adding that the Alberni Valley faces its own unique challenges.

“We don’t see people on park benches or in hotel lobbies but there are people living in really unhealthy [conditions,] living in campers… a lot of people couch surfing. It’s people being underhoused, there are a lot of people at risk for homelessness.”

While many issues that lead to homelessness, from wages to the amount of senior government funding, are out of civic government’s control, Ridgway said that she is still looking for city input and assistance in putting the plan together.

Coun. Chris Alemany will be council’s liaison with the AVSCI and Ridgway.

“We are interested in looking at a service user consultation component and any idea or funding or support for that… would be great,” said Ridgway.

Just Posted

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve issues cougar warning at Kennedy Lake

Cougar encounter reported between Tofino and Ucluelet.

Deadline looming for North Island College scholarship applications

Students have until April 24 to apply for a record number of… Continue reading

BC Ferries to pilot selling beer and wine on select routes

Drinks from select B.C. breweries and VQA wineries to be sold on Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen route

Hupacasath First Nation re-elects entire council for new term

Steven Tatoosh takes helm for fifth term as chief, talks economic prosperity for future

Young Professionals of the Alberni Valley seek members, new partnerships

Next Alberni Connect event is Thursday, April 18

VIDEO: Alberta man creates world’s biggest caricature

Dean Foster is trying to break the world record for a radio show contest

B.C. senior sentenced for sexually abusing special-needs granddaughter

73-year-old Cortes Island man will go to jail for three years

Howe Sound Queen sailing toward retirement

Vessel now up for auction ends regular runs between Crofton and Vesuvius at the beginning of June

Should B.C. lower speed limits on side roads to 30 km/h?

Vancouver city councillor wants to decrease speed limits along neighbourhood side roads

Lawsuit eyed over union-only raise for B.C. community care workers

‘Low-wage redress’ leaves 17,000 employees out, employers say

Landlord of alleged Okanagan shooter recounts deadly day

Tony Friesen was working in one of the units of his Penticton building when he heard shots

Foreign national arrested in connection to thefts at YVR

A woman, 60, is being held in police custody as Richmond RCMP investigate

Police pursue pesky porker on Vancouver Island

‘This was allegedly not the pig’s first escape’

Westjet tries again to dismiss proposed class-action lawsuit alleging discrimination

Former flight attendant claims airline broke contractual promise to create harassment-free workplace

Most Read