EICHS Celebrates 30 Years
Thirty years ago, residents in the neighbourhood of McCauley and members of the faith-based community got together and determined that there was a growing need for affordable housing in the older, central neighbourhoods of Edmonton. Families with low income were renting substandard unaffordable housing owned by absentee landlords, and many people discharged from Alberta Hospital were finding their way onto the inner city streets, in need of housing and supports.
Thanks to the compassion and commitment shared by these original stakeholders, The Edmonton Inner City Housing Society (EICHS) was born, and established itself as an effective community-based charity striving to meet the housing needs of vulnerable residents in McCauley and Boyle Street. Through much collective effort, the Society purchased a house (called Project #1) with five rooms in north McCauley.
Today we own and manage over 20 buildings, housing over 500 individuals and families.
On February 8, EICHS celebrated our 30th anniversary with a fundraising gala held at the CKUA building on Jasper Avenue. The event was catered by Century Grill and dueling pianists Jan Randall and Matt Day entertained the guests with their incredible talent.
Guests at the event included Mayor Don Iveson, MLA Laurie Blakeman, MLA Steve Young, and City Councillors Ben Henderson and Michael Walters.
We were also privileged to have the first President of the Society, Dr. Bob McKeon, speak at the gala. Bob has been a resident of the McCauley community for over four decades, and continues to do excellent work in our communities. Dr. McKeon was impassioned in his telling of our history, humble beginnings and the challenges that the Society faced in those early, important days. As the evening progressed, current board members had the opportunity to provide attendees with important updates regarding the future of the Society. This includes emerging partnerships that will enable us to diversify and expand into other communities, and to increase our presence and improve the affordable housing stock in the communities of Boyle Street and McCauley.
Article submitted by Cam MacDonald and Tamara Dabels of EICHS.