How to get help on the Sunshine Coast senior housing waiting list

Q: Another senior got help getting on waiting lists for subsidized housing by contacting the Resource Centre. What does your help look like?

Q: Another senior got help getting on waiting lists for subsidized housing by contacting the Resource Centre. What does your help look like?
A: When communicating with a senior (or future senior) about accessing subsidized housing, there are a few things we can talk about and help with.
First, we provide context on what is locally available and where these units are located. When people say they want to “list” we are talking about the three separate application forms needed to get listed for all Coast options. Why three forms? Because three umbrella organizations — Kiwanis Seniors Housing Society, Coast Housing Society and BC Housing — individually manage the roughly six addresses (including apartments and townhouses) that make up the subsidized housing offerings for seniors on the Coast.

If a person qualifies, the waiting list to move in can be one, two, 10 years. In one or two cases, I’ve seen things happen much less than that, but the main thing we suggest is to get on the lists ASAP.

You can decide to apply to one, all or none of the housing providers. As for completing the application forms, they can be completed with pen and paper, on the computer using a simple PDF editing program or, for one of the forms, via a online application.

At the Resource Center we can print or email these forms to you. We can help you complete them in person, over the phone or online. We can help you locate supporting documents such as bank statements or make copies of required IDs.
If people want help filling out any of these forms, we can schedule an appointment or a series of appointments to help. If you have someone in your life who is good with a pen or a computer and can help you around the house, that’s a good option too!

For low to moderate income seniors who rent from a landlord or are planning to rent from a landlord, there is a way to have these costs subsidized. Whether you’re renting long-term or waiting for a place in subsidized housing, check out BC Housing’s grant called SAFER (Shelter Aid For Elderly Renters).
The amount you are entitled to is determined by a number of factors, including the cost of your rent and your income. Amounts can vary, but many receive between $100 and $200 per month or, in some cases, more. Even if you change tenancies, this grant stays with you (as long as you still meet the requirements and jump through the hurdles required by BC Housing.) Call or email us for more information, or check your eligibility with the SAFER calculator: www.bchousing. org/housing-assistance/rental-assistance-programs/rap-safer-calculator.

If your motivation for getting on the subsidized housing listings is because you are facing eviction and/or at risk of homelessness, please contact us for an appointment to talk to us in more detail about your situation. We can help you get on any subsidized housing listings and consider how much SAFER would contribute to a future rental, in hopes of closing the gap. In the immediate term, we can review options for possible emergency funding, other grants, and help you sift through rental listings.

We can also connect you with social workers who can act as a support network, as well as community workers who may have access to funding or their own knowledge. If you are a senior (or anyone) facing eviction and are not yet in contact with our Community Advocate Ken Carson, it may be in your best interest to do so to ensure you understand your rights. Call Ken at 604-989-5771.

Angie Theilmann is an Information and Referral Specialist at the Sunshine Coast Resource Centre, your community information centre. The Resource Center is open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Appointments are recommended to ensure we are available to help you. Contact us: [email protected] or 604-885-4088.

About Christopher Easley

Check Also

Ecuadorian president seeks ‘balance’ between US and China

Ecuador’s interests are best served by “balanced” relations with the world’s two superpowers, President Guillermo …