The Ottawa branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association’s (CMHA Ottawa) Housing First Condominium Program began in 2002 with the purchase of 22 condominium units to rent to clients with severe and persistent mental illness who were chronically homeless or vulnerably housed.
As of 2019, CMHA Ottawa had expanded to 40 condominium units in regular buildings across Ottawa. In line with Housing First principles, the units are scattered throughout the city, and tenants are provided with health and social supports, such as an intensive case manager. The condo program is one part of the housing portfolio that CMHA Ottawa administers.
CMHA Ottawa is a Housing First agency that also provides case management and rent supplements to clients living in private-market units not owned by the organization. The condo program highlights an innovative way that one organization is addressing common Housing First challenges.
This toolkit outlines CMHA Ottawa’s Condominium Program as a guide for program replication. The aim is to provide a resource for community housing programs looking to develop a similar program within their organization.
Access the toolkit on CMHA's Ottawa's website.