Strengthening Communities’ Services Program

The Strengthening Communities’ Services Program (SCSP) is a shared funding program provided by the Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia in response to the COVID-19 pandemic to support unsheltered populations and to address related community impacts.  

The City of Nanaimo was awarded funds in 2021 (Round One) and in 2022 (Round Two). 

SCSP Round One:

The City of Nanaimo received $2.5 million from the first round of funding in 2021.  With this funding, the City has been able to fund a shower program, downtown clean up and security programs, portable toilets in key locations, as well as supporting a government-to-government partnership with Snuneymuxw First Nation for temporary and scattered site housing. The 2021 funding will also assist with operating costs and culturally appropriate program delivery for tenants in the housing.

Round One Funded Programs Summary (September 18, 2021 – June 30, 2023):

  • Shower program – offers showers to unhoused or precariously housed individuals 5 days per week.  The Shower Program also serves as a place where service providers can connect with those needing additional health and social support services. 
  • Urban clean-up program – provides cleaning services in the downtown core including needle pick-up and employment opportunities to individuals transitioning out of homelessness, addiction or correctional settings. 
  • Community connect – a pilot program highlighting a partnership between City Bylaw, RCMP and the Old City Quarter Health and Safety Alliance to offer security services in the Old City Quarter to deal with a high concentration of social challenges in the Old City Quarter.
  • Security services – increasing the evening and nighttime security presence in the Downtown area.
  • Portable toilets – provides access to washroom facilities and hygiene where there is limited access to public washrooms due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Temporary housing units – provides 12 temporary housing units for Snuneymuxw mulstimuxw (community members) experiencing homelessness. 
  • Scattered site housing – provides 4 scattered site-housing units for Snuneymuxw mulstimuxw (community members) needing financial and social support services. 
  • Outreach support –culturally safe, person centred, and trauma informed services for homeless individuals to connect them to housing, health, and community supports. 
  • Cultural services – provides services that supports community-based cultural programming and includes cultural safety and trauma-informed care capacity building. 
  • Housing supports program delivery – provides additional wrap around support services to those individuals accessing the temporary housing units and the scattered site housing units. 

SCSP Round Two:

The City of Nanaimo received $625,000 in the second round of funding in 2022. With this round of funding, the following initiatives will be supported, a morning meal program, extreme weather daytime shelter programs and supports, the community policing volunteer program, and ongoing government-to-government initiatives with Snuneymuxw First Nation to strengthen their capacity to provide additional supports to members of their Nation who are unhoused through outreach services.

Round Two Funded Programs Summary (August 2022 – July 31, 2023):

  • Food security and breakfast program – to support a sit down breakfast meal and address an existing gap for a morning emergency meal service allowing those who are unsheltered to eat indoors out of the elements. 
  • Extreme weather daytime shelter and support programs – sheltering services for the homeless during extreme cold winter temperatures, extremely hot summer temperatures as well as a warming space for generally cold days.  
  • Snuneymuxw Hulit Lelum’s Homeless Outreach Team Support – increases access and capacity to service and transport Snuneymuxw mulstimuxw (community members) experiencing homelessness to housing, health and social support services. 
  • Community policing volunteer support – increasing capacity to provide a second vehicle for volunteers to promote community safety in Nanaimo’s Neighbourhoods hardest hit by the impacts of homelessness. Trained volunteers patrol neighbourhoods, report criminal behavior, and provide information and navigational supports to neighbourhood residents and to individuals experience homelessness. 
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