AJOI is asking Montreal to commit funds to AJOI’s Ricochet project which will offer housing to young adults with no fixed address.
West Island youth-outreach organization AJOI wants Montreal to commit funds to help with a housing project.
Action jeunesse de l’Ouest-de-l’Île (AJOI) helps steer at-risk young people onto the right path with its social programs and team of street outreach workers. Two years ago it launched an initiative to address the invisible homeless problem in the West Island.
The invisible homeless don’t necessarily sleep on the street, so their struggle isn’t as obvious as others facing the same situation. Instead, they cram too many bodies into too tiny apartments or they couch surf. Unstable housing can put these young people further at risk.
Called Ricochet, the housing project would offer subsidized housing to young adults in need of a fixed address. The project would also have two emergency units. The operating budget for the facility is $300,000 — a sum AJOI cannot afford on its own.
AJOI executive director Tania Charron is asking Montreal to commit the funds necessary to hire a business development agent who would handle applying for grants which would help move the project forward and help cover the operational costs. She said the hire would cost around $55,000 for a 40-hour work week.
Charron said AJOI has been asking for money to address the homeless situation since 2015. In 2017-2018, Montreal gave AJOI $37,500 to hire an outreach worker. In 2018-2019, AJOI requested funds for two outreach workers, one coordinator and one development agent. It received $37,500 for one outreach worker.