The need for affordable housing in our inner city neighbourhood is critical. So many people struggle to find housing where they can live and still afford food and other necessities. This is getting increasingly difficult, as housing costs go up, while housing allowance does not. This (plus many other factors) makes for great instability with housing. For those living with mental health challenges, that instability has a massive negative impact on their health.
As a result, many end up in places where the price is affordable, yet the conditions are criminal. Some less ethical landlords, rather than invest money in upgrades, function in a way we call “disposable housing”- in other words, letting tenants live in the building until it is unlivable, or worse, letting tenants live in unlivable conditions until there is a fire or the city shuts them down. These houses are often boarded up until they are forced to be torn down.
In the face of these dynamics, the need for housing is more than about being affordable. They also need to be places that are safe, healthy and affirming of the dignity of every person. That is at the heart of what Chiara House aims to do. Not only are we creating affordable housing for those in need (especially those living with mental health challenges), but we also want those homes to be clean, attractive, welcoming and safe.
In order to make this a reality, we need people like you can help us reach our goals. Through financial giving, volunteering and prayer, you can help give people the chance to start afresh with dignity and hope.