The City of Grande Prairie recognizes the previous unauthorized encampment south of Rotary House was a serious issue in our community.
In response, the Temporary Transition Site (TTS) was an interim initiative which commenced on September 3, 2019. The safety and security of nearby residents, businesses and attendees were priority as we gained a better plan moving forward to address the underlying causes that have led to this situation.
During the TTS operation, it was our goal to:
1. Address ongoing community concerns
2. Mitigate issues for businesses and residents
3. Assess the individuals in the encampment and connect them with housing and/or support services
Although the TTS has concluded as of October 1, 2019, we are continuing to collaborate with all appropriate departments and external agencies to work in-sync on a community-based solution. As a result of the TTS, individuals have been able to access services and supports in finding homes, shelter options and permanent solutions that will be sustainable in the long term and mitigate future issues.
The St. Lawrence Centre is providing daytime drop-in services at Rotary House for individuals experiencing homelessness. The Rotary House, and the Rotary House Mat Program is available for the evening. A Winter Emergency Response Program has officially opened as of October 1 to provide both a daytime space for engagement and an overflow location for nighttime sleeping during the winter season.
We are continuing to work on establishing a permanent building for a permanent, long-term site where people experiencing homelessness have a place to be connected during the day and have access to support services.
We thank everyone for their patience and cooperation as we take these measures to address this issue for the whole community.