Oak Bay’s Threshold Housing Society home at capacity

New housing for young people was a full the day it opened

Threshold Housing’s Brooke MacDonald (left)

A bright and sunny home on Granite offers young people a fresh start in Oak Bay.

When the Threshold Housing Society’s newest home opened Sept. 1, it was not only full, the society was at 100 per cent capacity across all four of its homes, said Mark Muldoon, executive director.

“Given the lack of youth housing and quality of youth housing, we’re very happy,” he said.

Threshold targets youth age 16 to 24 in need of safe, secure and supported housing while they go to school or gain experience in the workforce. Youth are offered up to two years of transitional housing and programs. Threshold Housing operates three other facilities, Holly House, Mitchell House and Forrest House, which lies just outside of Oak Bay’s borders.

Safety means more than a door and a lock, Muldoon said.

“Our big goal now is to create a community in here of respect, inclusion, so the youth feel safe,” he said. “You can put a lock on a door but they have to feel safe.”

The society nearly achieved the goal of $100,000 for renovations to the building on Granite Street that was originally built as seniors’ housing and until two years ago was used as an Easter Seals home for families needing a place to stay during medical procedures in Victoria.

“This feels like home and is a good address,” said Jo-Ann Roberts, advancement and community relations for Threshold Housing Society.

Each room has a small fridge, dresser, bed and small balcony with a shared kitchen, bathrooms and media room. Residents are encouraged to socialize and congregation is already common in the kitchen as a hub, says one staffer.

“We’re very happy with the transformation; it was a true team effort,” Muldoon said. “It’s been a very community-minded effort to make it possible. From what I can see the neighbourhood is happy.”

Rotary Club of Oak Bay cleared away the overgrown garden to reveal a tidy back yard and revamped furniture in the activity room. Oak Bay United Church summer campers created a ‘welcome home’ banner and inviting placemats for the home.

Coast Capital Savings contributes a multi-year grant “to keep the house sustained. We can’t sustain it alone on rent,” he said. The organization that provides housing for young people, signed a five-year lease to use  the church-owned building adjacent to Oak Bay United Church.

This summer, Home Depot volunteers swept a soft teal and white across the halls and covered the entire interior in a fresh coat of paint within six hours one day.

“They see that to invest in youth today you’re enriching tomorrow,” Muldoon said of the corporate help.

Six years ago Threshold had only one home, they now have four that offer varying settings.

“We have a housing continuum and that’s nice to have,” Muldoon said. “When we see a client coming in, we can see what’s the best fit.”

With a live-in person in a lower suite and life-skills programs offered, the youth are entrenched in trustworthy adults. These are young people who really want to keep their housing, Muldoon added.

“We’re trying to encourage they all have a say in what happens here,” he said. “They really want this and they know it makes a difference.”

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Undercover operation exposes prominent human trafficking problem in Greater Victoria

VicPD’s Operation No More took place in mid-June at a local hotel

Victoria man in custody after shooting in 100-block of Gorge Road East

The man is facing recommended charges including assault with a weapon

Langford approves permit for 124-unit mass timber building

Tallwood 1 to be completed by late 2021

Book stores in Victoria notice uptick in sales for anti-racism titles

White Fragility, How to be an Antiracist are among the best selling titles

‘This year is unlike any other’: Trudeau delivers Canada day address

Sophie Gregoire Trudeau and the Prime Minister release video celebrating the national holiday

Tsilhqot’in Nation demands meeting with feds on declining Fraser River chinook stocks

The Nation wants to partner with DFO to rebuild and recover the stocks

Gov. General honours Canadians for bravery, volunteer service

Five categories of winners presented on Canada Day

COVID-19: Should non-medical masks be mandatory in Canada?

New poll shows Canadians are divided on the rules around mandatory masks

‘A little bit scary for everybody’: Air passengers wary as new rules take effect

Masks or face coverings have been mandatory on flights since April 20

VIDEO: Prince William and Kate chat with B.C. hospital staff about COVID-19

Seven-minute video posted to Youtube on Canada Day

River centre says heavy rains could bring flooding to central, northeastern B.C.

Water levels are already unusually high and river banks can be extremely unstable

Campbell River’s defunct cruise ship terminal to undergo evaluation for future plans

With no cruise ship coming through, the $16million terminal has been a white elephant for over 13 years

Most Read