The Coopérative de solidarité du Parc de Sainte-Barbe, a 12-unit social housing complex for independent seniors, was inaugurated on July 13. The project represents a total investment of over $4.6 million between the federal, provincial, and municipal governments.
The Quebec government contributed more than $2.1 million to the housing project including $1.3 million from the Société d’habitation du Québec (SHQ) through the AccèsLogis Québec program, while the Canadian government invested just over $1.7 million through the Canada-Quebec agreement on the Rapid Housing Initiative.
The municipality of Sainte-Barbe has also contributed over $1.4 million to the project, of which more than $800,000 stems from the Quebec government as part of a tripartite agreement with the SHQ and the Ministère des Affaires municipales et de l’Habitation.
Tenants of nine of the 12 units are eligible for the SHQ’s Programme de supplément au loyer Québec, which allows them to pay no more than 25 per cent of their income towards housing. The assistance through the rent supplement program amounts to nearly $155,000, spread over five years. The SHQ will cover 90 per cent of these costs while Sainte-Barbe will contribute the final 10 per cent.
The Coopérative de solidarité du Parc de Sainte-Barbe also received over $102,000 in financial assistance from the SHQ’s Rénovation Québec program, which is funded in equal parts by the SHQ and the municipality.
“Everyone deserves a safe and affordable place to call home,” said the federal minister of Housing and minister of Diversity and Inclusion, Ahmed Hussen. “By working closely with its partners, the government of Canada is improving the quality of life of Canadians, and especially the most vulnerable among them,” he continued, noting this project was another example of how the government is working to ensure that “No one is left behind.”
Huntingdon MNA Carole Mallette congratulated the housing co-operative for initiating the project, as well as the different partners involved for their commitment to ensuring housing for low-income people. “This is a remarkable contribution that will help to improve the living conditions of those who call these units home,” she said.
Claude DeBellefeuille, the MP for Salaberry-de-Valleyfield-Suroît, expressed her delight in having taken part in the inauguration. “Today, our community’s seniors are living in an environment that is adapted to their needs,” she said, noting the tenants are also actively involved in the administration of the housing co-operative.
On behalf of the municipal council in Sainte-Barbe, deputy mayor Daniel Pinsonneault thanked all those involved for their financial assistance and dedication to the housing initiative, including the mayor, Louise Lebrun, who has supported the project from the outset in 2014.
Denis Binette, the president of the Coopérative de solidarité du Parc de Sainte-Barbe, was also careful to thank all the project partners for their contributions, including the 15 volunteer members of the co-op and the current board of directors. “Be proud of it,” he said, before adding a “bravo!” on behalf of the seniors in Sainte-Barbe. (SR)