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New transition housing for women experiencing homelessness is closer to completion on Brunswick Drive in Saint John. Image: Tamara Steele

Transitional Housing For Women Nears Completion

By Tamara Steele Dec 5, 2022 | 7:00 AM

A transitional housing unit for women in Saint John’s Waterloo Village is closer to completion.

The project is scheduled to be turned over to Coverdale Centre for Women on Dec. 12 with the first tenants set to move on Jan. 8.

The project was originally scheduled to be completed on Nov. 30, but like many construction projects, has faced a couple of hurdles.

Mary Saulnier-Taylor, executive director of Coverdale Centre for Women, said they had a couple of delays, including the cost and time it took to complete soil remediation at the Brunswick Drive location.

“We also had a couple of supply chain issues but Iron Maple [Constructors] has been awesome at keeping us on track as much as possible,” Saulnier-Taylor said.

The first tenants will be moving into the accessible units on the first floor.

Sponsorships are still available to two of the twelve units at Rose House.

It’s a $5,000 commitment and ensures the women moving in have everything they need from towels to dishes and everything in between.

“We do up a nice little plaque in honour of a community member or a professional agency. [The unit] has all the supplies for the women when they arrive,” Saulnier-Taylor said.

Saulnier-Taylor said most transitional housing facilities have a time limit on how long women can stay, but that will not be the case at Rose House.

“We did that especially since the last couple of years it’s been such a difficult time to transition women or anybody because of our low vacancies and really, expensive rental rates,” she said.

Each micro unit comes with a staple grocery order and a rent supplement.

In March, Rose House was in danger of losing federal funding after project costs increased by $400,000 since the initial funding was first received.

The community rallied around the project with crowdfunding and other efforts with the understanding new transitional housing was greatly needed in Saint John.

Saulnier-Taylor offered thanks to the public for sending in messages and dropping off donations for Rose House.

Countless donations of gifts, toys and treats have been dropped off in recent weeks, she said.


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