Reaching Home program
Providing funds for community services to address the needs of homeless residents.
Reaching Home is a community-based program aimed at preventing and reducing homelessness by providing direct support and funding to Designated Communities, Indigenous communities, territorial communities, and rural and remote communities across Canada.
The Region of Peel has been designated the Community Entity, or fund administrator. We’re responsible for guiding a community planning process through a Community Advisory Board to help set funding priorities and recommends projects for grants.
Community Advisory Board and community plan
The Community Advisory Board is a local organizing committee responsible for guiding Reaching Home in Peel Region. Members are chosen through an open call for volunteers and represent the diversity of our community. All are committed to helping end homelessness in Peel. Advisory board members, with support from the Region of Peel and Employment and Social Development Canada staff, will review your application and make funding recommendations.
The advisory board has developed the Reaching Home Community Plan which identifies existing conditions in Peel and funding priorities through to 2024.
The plan was approved by the Canadian government in September 2020 and will be updated annually.
Proposed projects must serve or target individuals or families who are homeless or at imminent risk of homelessness. Under Reaching Home funding, definitions are as follows:
Homelessness is defined as a situation of an individual or family who does not have a permanent address or residence; the living situation of an individual or family who does not have stable, permanent, appropriate housing, or the immediate prospect, means and ability of acquiring it.
Being at imminent risk of homelessness is defined as a situation where one’s current housing will end within 2 months, for whom no subsequent residence has been identified, and is at immediate risk of moving into an emergency shelter or a place not meant for human habitation.
Chronic homelessness includes staying in unsheltered locations, that is public or private without consent, or places not fit for human habitation, staying in emergency shelters, and staying temporarily with others without the guarantee of accessing permanent housing. Chronic homelessness refers to individuals or family who is currently homeless and who meets the following criteria:
- They have a total of at least 6months or 180 days of homelessness in the past year (12 months).
- They have recurrent experiences of homelessness over the past 3 years, with a cumulative duration of at least 18 months or 546 days
2021 homelessness point-in-time count
As the Service Manager for the affordable housing system, the Region of Peel is required by the Canadian and Ontario governments to conduct a Point-in-Time Count every 2 years.
This count is one of the methods used to understand the nature and extent of homelessness at a single point in time. It’s used to understand local homeless data and to give resources to where they are needed most. The information is also used to improve services and to inform Peel’s 10-year Housing and Homelessness Plan.
Access the 2021 Point-in-Time Community Report.
Community homelessness report
As fund administrator, Peel Region is required to complete and publish a Community Homelessness Report to track our progress.
To be eligible for a Reaching Home 2022/2023 grant, your organization must meet the following requirements:
- Be an organization located in Peel Region with a mandate to provide human and social services.
- Be incorporated as a non-profit organization for a minimum of 2 years.
- Be governed by a volunteer board of directors that is representative of the community it serves.
- Be an organization that provides equal access to services for individuals of diverse cultures and disabilities.
- Have established and documented financial management systems in place and be able to provide relevant annual financial documents.
- Comply with the Ontario Human Rights Code in hiring practices and in provision of all its services.
- Have the appropriate and necessary liability insurance coverage for all aspects of the organization.
A coordinated access system is the process where individuals and families who are experiencing homelessness or at-risk of homelessness are directed to community-level access points. Trained workers will use a common assessment tool to evaluate the individual or family’s depth of need, prioritize them for housing support services, and then help to match them to available housing focused interventions.
Reaching Home requires all sub-projects receiving funding from the Region of Peel to participate in the coordinated access system and Peel's By-Name List.
Reaching Home funded projects providing housing placement (rapid rehousing, transitional housing, supportive housing) and associated support (case management) must receive referrals and fill vacancies through the coordinated access process.
Projects which have multiple funding sources may have program requirements imposed on them by other funders, and are encouraged but will not be required to assign all housing vacancies to the clients assessed through the coordinated access process.
Reaching Home funding is administered by Housing Client Services in the Human Services Department at the Region of Peel.
If you have questions or require assistance with your Reaching Home application, you can email us.
We're committed to responding to your email within 2 business days.
You can also call:
- Lisa Marie Middleton, Supervisor, Housing Client Services at 437-227-8964.
Join the Community Advisory Board
The program is coordinated at the community level by the Community Advisory. The Region of Peel is accepting applications from residents in Peel to join the Community Advisory Board.
The advisory board is the local organizing committee responsible for setting direction for addressing homelessness in the community. It's responsible for developing a plan, reviewing applications, and recommending funding for Reaching Home projects.