Siloam announces large housing initiative
SILOAM MISSION ANNOUNCES LARGE HOUSING INITIATIVE
87-unit complex to be renovated and provide dry, supportive housing for homeless
WINNIPEG, MB, April 12, 2011 – It’s been a long time coming, but it was worth the wait.
After years of pursuing housing options for Winnipeg’s homeless, Siloam Mission is announcing today the purchase of the Wolseley-area Madison Memorial Lodge on 210 Evanson Street.
The 87-unit housing complex will provide dry, supportive housing for guests of Siloam Mission that want to move toward self-sufficient lifestyles but need supports in place to help them achieve their goals.
“It’s an amazing day for our guests who are using our shelter while struggling to find affordable housing and coping with the stress of uncertainty,” says Siloam Mission’s executive director Floyd Perras. “But it’s also a great day for the city of Winnipeg. It’s a shame, but we have one of the lowest vacancy rates in Canada. There is an acute housing crisis in this city, and this project is our first phase in tackling that problem.”
Siloam Mission took possession of the Madison on April 1, 2011 following a year of negotiations with the Madison Lodge organization. Siloam bought the building for $300,000 and is working with a number of funders to help cover the purchase price and renovation costs. [UDPATE: All three levels of government together announced more than $1.2 million in funding for the renovation of the Madison. Read about it here]
The building is run down and in dire need of repairs. In the coming year, Siloam will renovate the four-storey building top to bottom to meet building code specs and provide a dignified space for people to call home.
“We want the Madison to become a place that people are proud to live in,” says Perras.
The Madison currently houses 75 people with mental and physical disabilities. Siloam will work with existing tenants to coordinate the renovations. Once renovated, Siloam Mission will start moving some of their own guests into the Madison as rooms become vacant.
Guests will work closely with a case manager to build their capacity and be asked to refrain from alcohol and illegal substances. Siloam anticipates that all residents living at the Madison will form a strong community that will not only benefit themselves but also the Wolseley neighbourhood.
For detailed information on operations, funding and more, please see the attached fact sheet for media
For more information, please contact:
Office: 204.956.4344 ext. 238
The purchase and renovation of the Madison Memorial Lodge is a big deal and all the details are hard to fit into a standard media release. That’s why we’ve prepared a short fact sheet for reporters, journalists and media.
History of the Madison
- The Madison was built in 1941.
- It was owned and operated by the Madison Lodge corporation since 1972.
- It has served as a nurses’ residence, a rehab facility for soldiers returning from WWII and a home for mentally and physically disadvantaged people.
- In 2007 the Madison was the site of two deaths: Police shot and killed a resident who they said fatally stabbed a fellow resident and injured another.
- In 2008, media reported that police discovered a methamphetamine lab in the building. Following a police search all charges were dropped.
- The purchase of the Madison marks a fresh start for the building. Along with a complete renovation, Siloam Mission will bring the building and operations up to the high standard of excellence that its main building on 300 Princess Street already exemplifies, and will continue to build a healthy, positive and dignified community.
Funding & Financials
- Siloam Mission is currently working with a group of funders to cover the purchase price and renovations. Once all parties are confirmed to be on board Siloam will release a complete list of funders.
- Renovations and furnishings will cost an estimated $1.5 million.
- The annual budget for the Madison will be an estimated $600,000.
- In the first year, Siloam Mission will contribute $144,000 to the annual budget.
- The Madison is planned to eventually be completely self-sufficient and act as a model for many more affordable housing initiatives.
Staffing & Operations
- Starting April 1, 2011, the Madison is a direct extension of Siloam Mission.
- There will be 10 staff working at the Madison, including a transitional services coordinator that will assist with case management.
- The Madison will continue to serve three meals a day. The expansion means that Siloam will provide an additional 1785 meals per week. That’s an additional 93,075 meals per year, which is a 25% increase from what Siloam is serving now.
- The Madison will be a dry facility to help people stay sober and move forward.
- There will be an intentional goal to partner with mental health, addiction and community agencies to provide on and offsite services for residents.
- As part of Siloam’s holistic care approach, Madison residents will have full access to Siloam’s Saul Sair Health Centre.
- Renovations will begin immediately and last one year.
- To make the overhaul as least stressful as possible for Madison residents, renovations will be done floor by floor.
- To avoid bedbugs, the finished suits will have metal box springs, vinyl mattresses, metal bed frames, metal/plastic furniture and be completely void of carpet or wood.
- Suites are expected to be renovated by Spring of 2012.
- Historically there has always been a certain turnover rate at the Madison. Once suites are renovated, Siloam will transition its own shelter guests into the Madison as rooms become vacant.
- Guests will need to apply for the Madison and be screened by Siloam’s transitional support team.
- New guests will need to work with Siloam’s case manager to set goals and abstain from drug/alcohol use.
- Many of Siloam’s guests have been staying at the emergency shelter for many years because it is safer and cleaner than many apartments and residential hotel rooms in Winnipeg’s inner city. They are ready to move on but need a support structure around them to succeed. These guests will be given priority.
- There is no time limit that a person can stay at the Madison. Some people will only need supportive housing for a few months until they are ready for self-sustenance. Some people might use the Madison for a few years until they have fully built up their capacity to move on. Others still might need a supportive environment for the rest of their lives to be successful.
- By the end of 2012, Siloam hopes to have transitioned 30 people from their shelter into the Madison.
- From here on out the Madison is a direct extension of Siloam Mission. For any media requests, please contact Siloam Mission.
- Many of the current and future tenants at the Madison are in vulnerable situations. Some of them struggle with mental health illnesses while others might be coping with tough circumstances in their lives. To respect the privacy of the tenants, we kindly ask that media always contact Siloam Mission before visiting the Madison; our media liaison will gladly help you.