Victoria Brain Injury Society (VBIS) is looking to open the door to a new housing program.
The housing program comes in response to the increase in rent and home prices that is impacting nearly everyone who lives in Greater Victoria, including those who have recently experienced a health scare or survived an injury.
A press release from VBIS said more and more people are reaching out for support regarding housing, which prompted this new program.
“Housing is the number one issue that many of our brain injury survivors face – there’s just not enough affordable, safe housing in Victoria,” said Pam Prewett, the executive director of VBIS. “Many brain injury survivors are not able to work following their injury, which has an often devastating effect on finances. Persons With Disabilities government funding does not provide enough money to compete in Victoria’s congested rental market.”
Prewett said the Persons With Disabilities subsidy only provides $1,422 each month, with a mere $375 earmarked for shelter costs, pushing brain injury survivors who use Persons With Disability funding into BC Housing’s subsidized housing program.
The waitlist for those who need housing through BC Housing can take years to move through, Prewett said, putting those who are healing in a further precarious state.
“VBIS developed the housing program to provide a dedicated housing coordinator to work with clients to pursue housing opportunities, assist with filling out forms, and advocate to housing organizations on behalf of brain injury survivors,” Prewett said. “These are things that are difficult to navigate without a brain injury, so the program is desperately needed.”
The main goals of the program, include locating proper housing, communicating with property managers and increasing accessibility to safe and stable housing.
As patients and others in the community see the cost of living in Victoria shoot through the roof, those who are most vulnerable continue to struggle, a fact that VBIS wants to change.
Victoria Brain Injury Society will participate in Giving Tuesday Nov. 29 in an effort to raise funds for the housing program and those who would like to contribute can visit vbis.ca/donate or call 250-598-9339.