Portsmouth Olympic Harbour sleeping cabins project looking for new home

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Sleeping cabin pilot project looking for a new home
WATCH: The pilot project's 10 sleeping cabins have to be out of Portsmouth Olympic Harbour by the end of April – Mar 25, 2022

The Kingston, Ont. sleeping cabin pilot project at Portsmouth Olympic Harbour is facing an uncertain future, as the cabins and residents can only stay there until the end of April.

“Got a bed, what else could you want,” says Brad Joyce as he gives a tour of his sleeping cabin.

“Got a fridge, got a dresser, all the foods here.”

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After eight years of spending his days trying to find his next meal and figure out where he’s going to put his head down at night, Joyce is now able to focus beyond that through the sleeping cabin pilot project.

“I did the WHIMIS here and I got 100 per cent on that,” he says.

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Programming offered through the project is all set up with the long-term goal of helping users to find work and a permanent residence.

“One person was housed and a number are preparing to be in that position,” says Our Livable Solutions executive director Chrystal Wilson.

“We have somebody who’s been doing job interviews and he actually has head hunters chasing him down.”

At the end of April, the 10 sleeping cabins need a new home.

City staff have been working with Wilson to find a new permanent location for the cabins, but it’s not an easy task.

A new location would need electricity, along with bathroom and shower facilities and a kitchen.

“Regardless of whether they find the location before the end of April or not, they are going to ensure that the residents will be transitioned to housing and not back to homelessness,” says city councillor Bridget Doherty.

To help secure the pilot project for future residents, Wilson is open to looking at different scenarios.

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“If somebody has some land, a property, a house, something that we could put some cabins around,” says Wilson.

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“Help keep this group stable and maybe we could even increase the program, that would be very helpful and we’d be really thankful.”

As for Joyce, he hopes the progress he and the residents have made isn’t lost.

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