The County of Simcoe has approved $500,000 in annual funding toward the Age-Friendly Seniors Housing Grant Program.
The program will help support eligible applicants in creating age-friendly housing through renovation or new housing developments, the county said Tuesday.
According to the county, the program will fund projects that incorporate accessible, adaptable and inclusive designs that allow seniors to continue to live independently in their communities for as long as possible.
“The County continues to take action with strategies to enhance regional support services and resources that address our aging population and affordable housing needs,” Simcoe County Warden George Cornell said in the release.
The grant program was recommended within the Simcoe County 2018-2023 Positive Aging Strategy, which identified a number of recommendations for the county and its municipalities to prepare for the region’s aging population.
“This grant program is an important initiative that aligns with our Age-Friendly strategy and provides an incentive for residents to help us create greater housing capacity so more seniors can live independently in their communities longer,” Cornell said.
Those completing housing projects located within Simcoe County — excluding Barrie and Orillia — are eligible to apply for this grant.
Applicants can be homeowners of principal residences or developers who wish to include accessible, adaptable and inclusive design modifications for occupants aged 60 or older.
County officials say the grant amounts will be distributed based on the number of applications received and ability to meet the funding criteria.
According to the release, the grants will be awarded under three streams: accessible housing design for seniors, design for individuals with dementia and the provision of support services for housing that incorporates enhanced aspects of accessibility over and above compliance with building code standards for residential units.
The county says an age-friendly grant selection subcommittee will evaluate each submission in accordance with established criteria and will make recommendations to the Simcoe County Age-Friendly Advisory Committee for endorsement.
The deadline to apply for 2019 is May 15.