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Identifying the Need

A City of Vancouver study in 2003 estimated that 6,314 single room accommodation units are contained in the downtown core.

  • A typical SRA unit consists of one room about ten by ten feet, with no private bathroom and no cooking facilities only one bed and one sink.
  • This is where seniors spend 80% of their lives
  • One senior described his room as a “jail cell with no bars”.
  • 60% of a seniors monthly income goes towards rent, whereas the average person spends up to 30%.
  • The shelter component of BC Employment Assistance tends to limit rent increases to $375 and the average rent in the hotels is $375-$400.
In keeping with life expectancy levels in the community, Vancouver Second Mile Society considers anyone who is 45 years old to be a senior. Various poverty issues including inadequate housing, complex health issues, isolation and lack of access to good nutrition results in the older years being particularly difficult for community members.
 
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We give seniors a sense of community. We actively address the social, recreational, nutritional and informational needs of low-income seniors.