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Homeless to Housed: New Rapid Rehousing Initiative

30 March 2021

Partnering with various organizations in the community is nothing new at the Old Brewery Mission. By working together, we can better leverage each-others’ expertise to serve our common goal of ending chronic homelessness in Montreal. Today, we announced the launch of a joint rapid rehousing initiative in collaboration with Welcome Hall Mission. The project aims to help over 100 people experiencing homelessness move into permanent housing this spring and get off to a good start with short-term rent supplements.

The initiative is composed of two unique yet complementary programs, the Housing Outreach Team (Équipe mobile urgence logements) and Programme Bienvenue funded by the CIUSSS Centre-Sud-de-l’Île-de-Montréal and developed in close collaboration with other local organizations, including CAP Saint-Barnabé and Projet Logement Montréal.

Housing Outreach Team: Connecting with Homeless Montrealers

The Old Brewery Mission’s Housing Outreach Team includes a dozen psychosocial intervention workers and trained counsellors, and combines the expertise of CAP Saint-Barnabé, Projet Logement Montréal, and Welcome Hall Mission.

Over the next few months, the Housing Outreach Team aims to meet with 400 women and men experiencing homelessness, including people living in encampments and visiting drop-in day centres like the Old Port of Montreal’s Grand Quai, to assess their needs for housing.

“Since the start of the pandemic, Montreal’s homeless-serving organizations have worked with public health authorities to protect vulnerable women and men with no place to go. This combined effort has helped bridge silos across systems. Our Housing Outreach Team will build on this foundation to ensure people in shelters, encampments and COVID response services, including hotels, are assisted to move into permanent housing,” said James Hughes, President and CEO of the Old Brewery Mission.

The goal is to connect at least 200 homeless individuals with partnering organizations and rally our efforts to effectively provide permanent housing tailored to their specific needs.

Programme Bienvenue: A Place to Call Their Own

Welcome Hall Mission’s Programme Bienvenue is a three-month pilot project designed to assist up to 120 people experiencing homelessness by supporting men and women on their journey into permanent housing.

With the help of like-minded community initiatives, Programme Bienvenue will provide guidance through sustainable resources, an important step towards eliminating an emergency shelter response and paving the way to stable housing.

“Our objective is to end chronic homelessness in Montreal. Every person deserves to have a place to call home and they deserve the support systems to help them stay in that home. Our teams of professionals are working in a coordinated fashion with our valuable partners in the health care system and our government funders to serve Montrealers in need. We invite all Montrealers to join us in this effort,” said Sam Watts, CEO of Welcome Hall Mission.

The program is offered to adults who are ready to reclaim their autonomy and settle into a place of their own. It includes:

  • One-on-one time with an Intervention Worker
  • Apartment furniture
  • A first grocery order
  • A rent supplement for the first few months of rent

Reorienting Resources to Prevent and End Homelessness

While services such as emergency shelters and drop-in day centres will continue to be an important part of Montreal’s homelessness response system, both Welcome Hall Mission and the Old Brewery Mission agree that shifting resources spent on COVID-19 responses towards more permanent housing solutions will better position them to prevent and end chronic homelessness.


Help Montrealers experiencing homelessness find a place to call home. Donate today to support our rapid rehousing efforts.


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