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More affordable housing for young moms at Michael House

All four levels of government involved in funding the expansion

Local politicians heard from the ground floor just how important government funding can be on Friday.

Kyler Fraser, a young mom, spoke at the official opening for eight new affordable supportive housing units at Michael House, Guelph's home that provides shelter, short-term affordable housing and support for pregnant young women and new mothers.

Fraser knows first hand what the facility can do for a person.

"I'm not the person I was two years ago," said Fraser, who said she did a complete turnaround after arriving at Michael House.

In addition to becoming a young mother, she said she "learned more about myself and learned how to be comfortable with myself again."

She even finished high school, something she didn't think was going to be possible when she first got pregnant.

"It's about learning how to live independently," she said of the facility, located at 187 Bristol St.

The $2 million expansion to the location added eight new two-bedroom affordable units. Young mothers pay a subsidized rent and receive other assistance and programming. The goal is to help the mothers get on their feet and get them back out living in the community.

"This is where we're going to change the world," Michael House Executive Director Rosemary Coombs said.

Politicians from all four levels of government were on hand for the official launch.

"The whole community should be behind this organization," said MP Lloyd Longfield. "It's an important need in our community."

"This symbolizes the wonderful work we can do" when levels of government work together, said MPP Liz Sandals.

"It's a safe, affordable home life for moms and their babies. So often you don't just need the housing, you need the support," said Sandals.

County of Wellington Warden Dennis Lever called it a place that "helps individuals in our community reach their potential" and Mayor Cam Guthrie said Michael House offers "peace, dignity and safety."

"It's more than just a roof over their heads," Guthrie said.


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Tony Saxon

About the Author: Tony Saxon

Tony Saxon has had a rich and varied 30 year career as a journalist, an award winning correspondent, columnist, reporter, feature writer and photographer.
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