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Stories Tagged - RESOLVE

The RESOLVE Campaign has made a measurable impact on homelessness in Calgary since its inception, as it inches closer to its goal of creating affordable rental housing with supports for 3,000 vulnerable and homeless Calgarians.
Courtesy RESOLVE Campaign

March 21, 2018 | Kathleen Renne

A home for all

RESOLVE affordable housing initiative approaches successful conclusion

What do I want, you ask so innocently.
I want a HOME, as many of you have.

These lines come from a poem written by 67-year-old Anne Cartledge. "I use all capital letters when I write the word 'home,' because that's how important it is," she said.

Plagued with severe arthritis and fibromyalgia that left her unable to work, Cartledge first survived on AISH (Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped) and, now, on her Old Age Security pension.

Though Cartledge describes herself as a "frugal shopper" and "good at the scrounge routine," she also admits, "I am part of the circle that if I didn't have subsidized housing, I'd be living on the street."

Calgary Centre MP Kent Hehr, Alberta’s Minister of Seniors and Housing Lori Sigurdson, and Mayor Naheed Nenshi were all on hand at the ground-breaking event for Horizon Housing Society’s new 161-unit affordable housing development in Glamorgan in April.
Courtesy Horizon Housing Society

Aug. 02, 2017 | Joel Schlesinger

Strength in numbers

Calgary is coming together to win the war on homelessness, one home at a time

What a difference a year can make. The City of Calgary launched its affordable housing strategy in July 2016, aiming for a more unified approach to building more housing for low-income individuals and families. Since then, a lot has happened, according to groups that provide housing for low-income Calgarians.

"What we've seen in the first year is a tremendous drive toward increased collaboration and recognition that none of us can go it alone," said Kim O'Brien, CEO of Horizon Housing Society.

The importance of working together in a more co-ordinated fashion cannot be understated because the challenge of providing affordable housing in Calgary is daunting. It's a problem the City, as well as other Canadian municipalities, have been struggling to address for several years – despite the best of intentions.

Marissa Toohey, manager of government relations and committees for the Calgary Region at CHBA - UDI Calgary Region Association, believes there is not a single solution that will solve affordable housing. Photo courtesy Marissa Toohey

Dec. 16, 2016 | CREBNow

Q & A with CHBA-UDI's Marissa Toohey

Housing industry expert discusses everything from affordable housing to the best room in her home

Marissa Toohey has one of the better views of Calgary's housing industry – and we're not talking about the one out of her living room. As manager of government relations and committees for the Calgary Region at CHBA - UDI Calgary Region Association. Toohey works closely with municipalities in the broader region on matters impacting the building and development industry.

CREB®Now recently had the opportunity to sit down with her to chat about everything from affordable housing to a national housing strategy. Here's what she had to say:

RESOLVE executive director Sheryl Barlage says the economic downtown is impacting overcrowding in Calgary homes. Photo by Wil Andruschak/For CREB®Now

June 23, 2016 | Alex Frazer Harrison


Housing officials cite increasing rates of overcrowding in Calgary's housing market

Housing experts say a soft labour pool brought upon by weak economic conditions is partly to blame for increasing rates of overcrowding, or "underhousing" in Calgary homes.

RESOLVE executive director Sheryl Barlage – whose organization is made up of nine partner agencies aimed at building affordable and supported rental homes for 3,000 homeless and vulnerable Calgarians by March 31, 2018 – says about 3,500 Calgarians were considered homeless in a recent Homeless Foundation survey, with about 14,000 at risk of homelessness – and that doesn't include people "couch-surfing."

With the economic downturn, "we know fundamentally that number is up. It's hard to get a handle; people are one paycheque away (from homelessness) or aren't in appropriate housing. And the current economic climate (as well as) social issues are impacting the need. But the need has always been urgent."


March 11, 2016 | CREBNow

RESOLVE's Stepping Stone Manor nears completion

Beltline assisted-living building first for campaign

Calgarians at risk of homeless will soon have added housing options, with the news that Stepping Stone Manor, a 30-unit assisted-living apartment building in Calgary's Beltine, is near completion.

Representing the first new construction project to be completed through the RESOLVE campaign, the building has funded by donors, provincial grants and built by Cedarglen Living Inc.


Aug. 21, 2015 | Cody Stuart

The NIMBY issue

Has "not in my backyard" become Calgary's unofficial slogan?

The cry "not in my backyard" has been heard in this city over many topics. From secondary suites to skateparks to special needs schools and even bottle depots, objections have arisen on projects both public and personal.

Having even spawned its own Twitter handle, Calgary's long-running history of NIMBYism has seen residents object to special needs schools on the basis that they would lower property values, social housing based on an increase in population density and skateboard parks based on the "racket" created by budding Tony Hawks.

For those tasked with moving projects forward in the face of such criticism, it can be a delicate balance.

"Obviously there is NIMBYism in Calgary, as there is in every city. Whether or not there's more, I don't know," said RESOLVE spokeswoman Amy Hurst.

Attainable Homes CEO David Watson stands outside of the not-for-profit organization's Mount Pleasant 1740 project. Watson said local agencies like his are being forced to be more creative in addressing the city's affordable housing needs. Photo by Wil Andruschak, for CREB®Now.

July 28, 2015 | Barbara Balfour

Outside-of-the-box look at affordable housing?

From shipping containers to crowd funding

A continuous decline in affordable housing, along with an increase in the populations who need it, is forcing Calgary agencies to seek creative solutions.

"I'm looking for anything that can help us provide housing in a more economical way," said David Watson, president and CEO of Attainable Homes Calgary, a not-for-profit that helps Calgarians at a moderate income level get on the property ladder. "The more ideas we can bring to the table to reduce the costs of houses, the better."

The citywide benchmark price for homes in Calgary in June totaled $455,400, a figure that puts housing firmly out of reach for many vulnerable Calgarians.

Meanwhile, the average rent for a two-bedroom apartment in the city rose by almost six per cent in the 12 months leading up to April 2015, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.

To address the crisis, Watson's organization is looking at all its options, including repurposing surplus shipping containers from China that are brought in by rail from Vancouver to Alberta. Carstairs-based Blocks Modular, for example, is currently turning the containers into stackable living spaces at a fraction of the cost of traditional homes.


July 10, 2015 | Cody Stuart

A city in need

Stampede event highlights continuing urgency to house Calgarians in need

With the Calgary Stampede shining a spotlight on our city's sense of community, an event held during this year's Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth highlighted the continuing needs of some of our community's most vulnerable citizens.

As part of Stampede Week, Horizon Housing – one of several local organizations dedicated to housing the city's most vulnerable residents – held a barbecue, with residents on hand from the organization's properties.

Serving tenants with a variety of special needs – including those with mental health challenges, physical disability, families and seniors living below the poverty line and the working poor – Horizon Housing executive director Kim O'Brien said while the current state of Alberta's economy is debatable, it hasn't changed the willingness of Calgarians to give to a good cause.


June 03, 2015 | CREBNow

Coming together

Mustard Seed, RESOLVE campaign join forces for The 1010 Centre

A new 12-storey development has officially opened in Calgary to provide affordable homes for low-income residents.

The 1010 Centre, owned by The Mustard Seed, includes 224 furnished units, as well as support services including employment coaching, a computer lab and assigned support workers for residents.
The centre is located downtown on Centre Street S.E.

"For 30 years, the Mustard Seed has been caring for Calgarians experiencing poverty and homelessness. With the completion of The 1010 Centre, we are now able to provide 224 safe, new, affordable home to low-income and formerly homeless residents," said Mustard Seed CEO Stephen Wile.

April 30, 2015 | CREBNow

Million dollar boost

RBC makes donation to Calgary RESOLVE campaign

A 160-unit building will be constructed under Calgary's RESOLVE Campaign thanks to a $1-million donation from RBC.

The gift, presented April 17, was designated to Horizon Housing Society, which provides homes for people with mental health challenges and disabilities as well as families and seniors working below the poverty line, and the working poor.

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