February 25, 2013

The Biminaawzogin Regional Aboriginal Women’s Circle (BRAWC), in partnership with Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services (OAHS) and the Government of Ontario, is pleased to announce the delivery of 6 housing units in the City of Orillia. These units are being developed under the First Nation, Inuit, Métis Urban & Rural (FIMUR) 2012/15 Housing Program. FIMUR 2012/15 is part of the off-Reserve Aboriginal housing component of the Federal and Provincial governments’ Investment in Affordable Housing for Ontario program (IAH).

“We are thrilled to receive the support of Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services which will address the current housing gap in Simcoe County and provide longer-term residential support for Aboriginal women. These units will provide supportive, stable, secure, culturally-rooted, accommodations that will afford Aboriginal women the stability, time and opportunity to attain the confidence, tools and skills required to make a successful transition to permanent housing”, said Candace Hawke, Executive Director of BRAWC.

“Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services’ partnership with Biminaawzogin Regional Aboriginal Women’s Circle will assist in developing additional housing for Aboriginal women living in Orillia. These 6 units are an example of how the extension of the FIMUR program has allowed Aboriginal Housing Providers and Service Providers in Orillia to further address the housing needs of their community,” said Don McBain, Executive Director of OAHS.

Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services (OAHS) is a non-profit Aboriginal Housing Provider that manages rental units and residential developments across Ontario. In 2009, OAHS was allocated $60 million through the Federal Aboriginal Housing Trust, to provide off-Reserve affordable housing opportunities to Aboriginal people located off-reserve, outside of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). With these funds, OAHS designed and delivered the First Nation, Inuit, Métis Urban and Rural (FIMUR) FIMUR Housing Program, consisting of an Assisted Homeownership Program and a Rental Housing Program.

The goal of the FIMUR Housing Program was to assist in the design and delivery of safe, affordable, culturally appropriate housing for First Nation, Inuit, and Métis people living off-Reserve in Ontario. Building on the success of the previous program, OAHS received an additional $19 million under the Investment in Affordable Housing (IAH) program and in 2012, the First Nation, Inuit, Métis, Urban and Rural 2012/15 Housing Program was launched. In addition to Assisted Homeownership and Rental Housing components, the FIMUR 2012/15 Program also introduced a Home Repair component.

BRAWC’s core mandate is to support Aboriginal woman and women’s organizations as a unified voice. BRAWC formed in the year 2000, as a Regional body in recognition of the need and advantages of working more closely together, sharing information and collaborating on issues of common concern. BRAWC incorporated in 2006 and objectives include: developing supportive services, programs and facilities for Aboriginal women at risk, in crisis or transition; to develop initiatives that will assist Aboriginal women in living free from violence and abuse; and to develop initiatives that promote personal growth and development for the social and economic advancement of Aboriginal women.

For more information about this project and BRAWC please contact:

Candace Hawke, Executive Director
Biminaawzogin Regional Aboriginal Women’s Circle
Ph: 705-326-3900