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Neighbourhood Stories

March 17, 2021, by: Fifth Avenue

An Affordable Housing Campaign Celebrating 50 Years of Community Impact

An Affordable Housing Campaign Celebrating 50 Years of Community Impact

Options Community Services is a registered charity with more than 80 programs serving over 100,000 people each year in Surrey, Delta, White Rock and Langley. Our Mission is to inspire hope and belonging for all, by building a healthy and caring community where everyone thrives.

The absence of affordable housing is one of the biggest issues faced by the people who reach out to Options Community Services. It has also been cited as the biggest barrier to combating homelessness.

Homelessness is not a new issue, but the faces of those impacted have changed. According to the 2020 Homeless Count in Metro Vancouver (data taken in March pre-pandemic), Surrey had the second-highest number of individuals affected by homelessness.

For those experiencing homelessness for the first time, 43% were under the age of 25 and 45% were over the age of 55.

At Options, we’ve felt called to step up to help address this most critical need as we work with Habitat Housing Society, our sister charity, to plan our first purpose-built, mixed-income housing site at King George and 81st Avenue in Surrey. Habitat develops and builds affordable housing complexes and will carry out the development of the site and operation of the housing units.

Of the 100 housing units spread across the top four floors of this build, 30 will be market rentals (still targeted to vulnerable populations, as not all vulnerability is financial), while the remaining 70 will be non-market rentals—designated as affordable housing, with rent starting as low as $375 per month for a one-bedroom.

These units will be for tenants including women fleeing violence, refugees, seniors, at-risk youth and others facing barriers in finding decent and affordable housing.

The ground and second floors of this affordable housing build will host several community services provided by Options, such as Early Years, special needs services for children, and mental health outreach – allowing Options to expand accessibility to our services to not only the tenants but to the community as well.

Fifth Avenue is honoured that two of our Senior Leaders are two of 50 incredible women from the South Fraser community who have stepped up to be a “voice” for this campaign, but it will take many others supporting them to see this through to success!

These 50 women, along with your partnership, are about to affect vital community change for years to come. Thank you for your support.

Please consider supporting Jamie Squires & Michelle Des Rosiers as they each work to raise $25,000 towards the overall goal.

Together we can erect the walls on this development and provide a safe haven for many people who are in need of stable and affordable housing.

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