Completion is nearing for the 41-unit Rosalie’s Village and Mary’s Place daycare dedicated to single mothers and at-risk women at 4351 West Saanich Rd.
Construction of the multiplex facility on the grounds of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul started in the fall of 2015 and executive director Angela Hudson says the keys should be handed out to Rosalie’s first tenants by Sept. 17.
All levels of government kicked in for Rosalie’s Village, with almost $14 million announced for the $12.5 million construction as well as ongoing management.
Saanich contributed $172,262, the Capital Regional District board $630,000 through the Regional Housing Trust Fund, and the province $10 million.
St. Vincent de Paul donated the land, worth about $1.3 million, and has committed to raising $1.6 million in donations.
“We’re still seeking donations from the community for the playground, the daycare and the community kitchen,” Hudson said. “So far it’s been going really well but we’re not done fundraising yet.”
Rosalie’s will offer 18 two-bedroom units, all dedicated to single mothers with up to two young children. Eight of the two-bedroom units will be townhomes and the other 10 will be apartments.
Another 20 one-bedroom suites will be allocated to women aged 40 to 55 who are at-risk for homelessness. There will be an additional three units, a one-bedroom and two two-bedroom, kept for women and children who are in need of immediate housing. These will be furnished and will be designed for short-term stays, limited to a six month maximum.
The goal of Rosalie’s is to support a successful transition of Rosalie’s residents into appropriate long-term housing. If needed, some can continue to use the daycare free of charge as long as their children qualify.
For those individuals transitioning into other housing, Saint Vincent de Paul will work with other housing providers such as Pacifica Housing or the M’akola Housing Society to find appropriate housing for those residents looking for seniors or non-profit family housing.
M’akola Development is currently leading the construction project.
Hudson said the application process is underway for the family units. Rosalie’s will not have a waitlist, rather, it will take referrals from local agencies.
“We wanted to build Rosalie’s for a long time but we weren’t going to build it without a daycare, which St. Vincent de Paul is paying for itself,” Hudson said.
Mary’s Place daycare will have 37 spots, all for children five and under. Twenty of those are for children staying at Rosalie’s with 17 more for the public.
With Rosalie’s comes other upgrades, a community garden between the building and the Quadra Street/West Saanich overpass, and a new double-door entrance to the existing Ozanam building, which is home to St. Vincent de Paul’s offices. The Ozanam courtyard is undergoing a renovation for wheelchair accessibility as 17 of its current members are wheelchair bound.
Kenzen Sport Karate, a key tenant for St. Vincent de Paul, will offer a daily karate class to the preschool aged children of Mary’s Place daycare. The classes will be free of charge as the children will be eligible for provincial sporting grants.