Council approves funds for Southern Alberta Self-Help Association housing renovations

By Lara Fominoff @LaraFominoff on Twitter
July 3, 2018 - 1:14pm

LETHBRIDGE - The Southern Alberta Self-Help Association (S.A.S.H.A.) will be getting $203,240.31 from the City of Lethbridge's Affordable Housing Capital Project Grant fund to complete some much-needed renovations to one of its houses.

S.A.S.H.A. is in the third stage of completing renovations to its homes, after the other two were completed earlier, according to Executive Director Sherri Koskewich.

"We have three residences here in Lethbridge, and over the past six years we've been working on a project to renovate each of them gradually with grant funding that we get from the province, the city, and from other various organizations."

The renovations to "House A" will include building and renovating the home's kitchen and dining room, vinyl flooring, upgrades to electrical and plumbing throughout the home, bathrooms, concrete work, insulation and furnace upgrades, along with landscaping outside.

The home is the organization's administrative headquarters and houses 10 clients. Altogether they serve about 50 people every year.

Total cost of the project is estimated to be about $240,000 with S.A.S.H.A. also kicking in about $36,000.

Koskewich explains S.A.S.H.A. was initiated in 1978 after a group of parents who had their young adult children treated at the Ponoka Hospital found that the young adults needed further community support after they became stable and were discharged.

"So, these family members created Southern Alberta Self-Help Association. And through the years we've grown to have several other residences in the community supporting adults with mental health issues. So, schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder, anxiety disorders, depression and things like that. Also supporting people that have addictions issues that often go along with that."

Some of the clients stay at the homes, where they learn to develop and maintain skills like medication management, symptom management, nutrition and meal preparation, household maintenance and personal financial management skills.

Renovations are expected to get underway in the next couple of months and could continue into next spring.

And Koskewich says that they're grateful for the support from the city.

"We've been working closer with the City of Lethbridge and we really appreciate that they have been able to give us this additional support so that we can keep these homes available to adults with mental illness in the community and provide the supports that are needed." 

For more information on the organization, go to http://www.sashahouse.org/home.html .

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