2012- The Nechako View Senior Citizen Home Society was formed in 1959 with a mandate to provide affordable rental housing for seniors in Vanderhoof and area. This 2009 Seniors Housing Building Project demolished an aging building and built nine affordable housing units in the form of one triplex and one sixplex.
This project has brought Nechako View Senior Citizen Home Society's current capacity to house seniors in Vanderhoof up to thirty three exceeding their original goal of thirty one units. The society is very active in mobilizing volunteer labour, local fundraising, and obtaining in-kind contributions from community businesses.
Nechako View Senior Citizen Home Society already has a waiting list of thirty five seniors that is expected to grow over the next number of years. The consistency and size of the waitlist is prompting the society to consider building even more units as funding becomes available.
Affordable seniors housing is a rising issue across northern BC. The rapidly aging populations of many towns in the rural and northern British Columbia is putting a significant strain on existing seniors housing stock. It is projects like this that are becoming more and more important as demand from seniors who wish to continue living in their life long communities continues to grow.
The Seniors Housing Building Project has been a significant infrastructure project that brought investment into Vanderhoof during a slow economic period in 2009.
In fact, the investment in this project by the Government of Canada in partnership with Northern Development has translated directly into work for local contractors. This project provided the equivelent of eight full time jobs for one full year of direct employment. This project allowed the local contractor and several employees to maintain employment during the economic downturn. The leading contractor sub-contracted to other local contractors where possible and purchased all building supplies locally passing on the economic benefits of the project throughout the local economy.
Beyond the immediate economic benefits afforded by the contruction of the housing units, the retention of seniors within the community of Vanderhoof is an important economic consideration as it reduces out-migration from the community and helps keep families together.