Grace Inn Shelter in Belleville is being proposed as the after-hours shelter for another three months.
This would mean the shelter would continue its role after the present December 31 end-term.
The Community and Human Services committee made this decision on Wednesday after learning Hastings County did not receive any proposals in response to a request put out in September.
Like the current agreement, services will be provided between 4:30 p.m. and 8:30 a.m. on weekdays and 24 hours a day on weekends and holidays.
Funding for this program is allocated under the Homelessness Prevention Program.
The recommendation goes to County Council for final approval at its meeting later this month.
Community and Human Services Interim Director Rhonda Phillips presented the following report to the committee:
The After-Hours Emergency Homeless Program ensures that members of the community facing immediate emergency needs after-hours are offered the consistent response of the department’s wrap around services. These support services address emergent homelessness and food security issues for residents until the Community and Human Services offices open the following business day.
In the September Community and Human Services meeting, staff was authorized to immediately release a Request for Proposals (RFP) to seek an alternate service provider to maintain the after-hours emergency homeless service program.
The County of Hastings did not receive any proposals in response to RFP # 832-2022. Therefore, based on immediate need for this very important service, staff commenced an investigation into available community partnerships that would be deemed an appropriate fit for providing after-hours services. Identified best fit criteria are as follows:
- Community agent should have established knowledge and expertise working with the population that after-hour services typically serve.
- Provider should have established links and working relationships with the available community services that would together bring support to the homeless population.
- Provider should currently have operations that are run outside of typical business hours.
After consideration, it was determined that the Grace Inn Shelter team possess all these required elements and has demonstrated interest in continuing with the provision of services as they are currently modeled by our current provider, the Enrichment Centre. They are proposing to seamlessly assume the current role as after-hours operator for three months commencing December 1, 2022. This interim approach will allow for one month of overlap to work with the Enrichment Centre for a smooth handoff and put the required existing resources in place. This would mean that for the month of December, two agencies would simultaneously receive funding and work together. Additionally, during the 90-day interim period, Grace Inn Shelter will undertake the design of an in-house after-hours model which will aim to expand upon the current parameters of the service by bringing in-person and complementary supoorts to the approach.
Like the current agreement, services will be provided between 4:30 p.m. to 8:30 a.m. on weekdays and 24 hours a day on weekends and holidays. Funding for this program is allocated under the Homelessness Prevention Program (HPP). During this interim period, funding will be extended from the current model of $3860/month for 3-month period.
A subsequent report will be brought forward for Community and Human Services Committee’s consideration prior to the 90 day transition period detailing the operating model Grace Inn proposed and associated costing.
Hastings County staff, will work alongside both the Enrichment Centre and Grace Inn Shelter to support this transition