The province is investing $80,000 in Victoria’s Solid Outreach Society, with the aim of extending life-saving services and supports for those experiencing or at risk of homelessness.
The society offers a low-barrier space with a comprehensive range of culturally appropriate overdose prevention, health education and support services delivered by people with lived experience of substance use to reduce the harm associated with drug use, according to a release. Solid aims to help members stay alive during difficult times so they will have the opportunity to improve their lives with the proper supports.
“Solid is a place of connection for people who don’t always get the care they should,” said Sheila Malcolmson, minister of mental health and addictions. “With our funding, Solid will continue to welcome people with addiction challenges in Victoria and support them seeking the help they need.”
The society’s director of operations Mark Willson said the funding is allowing the organization to provide the accessible drop-in space, and without the funding, it would be reduced to a simple harm-reduction supplies pickup space.
“There is a serious lack of drop-in spaces for people who use drugs, people who are homeless and for people who might have basic housing needs met but who have nowhere to go during the day,” said Willson. “Having a drop-in space and peer staff to engage and support them is the best way to connect people with health and harm-reduction services they wouldn’t otherwise have access to.”
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