London, ON – Indwell, a Christian charity that creates deeply affordable housing communities, is in London to stay. Thanks to London Community Foundation’s Affordable Housing Fund and support from the London community, Indwell is creating homes for some of London’s most marginalized citizens.
In February, Indwell finalized the purchase of Woodfield Gate at 356 Dundas Street in downtown London. The building opened in July 2019 and is now home to 69 individuals. London Community Foundation helped to fund the building’s construction and provided a low interest loan to Indwell to purchase it from the developer. Two significant donations from anonymous donors also helped Indwell make the purchase. The charitable organization is still seeking about $1.6M in donations from the community toward the building’s purchase price.
“Woodfield Gate offers quality, permanent homes for people seeking wellness and belonging,” said Jeff Neven, Executive Director at Indwell. “With ownership of the building, we’ve made a long-term commitment to London, and we’ll continue to build affordable housing in the city.”
“Our Vital Signs report has identified affordable housing as an urgent community need and we are responding. Indwell’s inclusive, supportive housing model is exactly what we need more of in our community and we hope to continue funding more projects like this through LCF’s Affordable Housing Fund,” said Martha Powell, CEO of London Community Foundation.
The project at 356 Dundas Street not only provides homes for those who live there, it has also helped system flow within St. Joseph’s Health Care London’s Mental Health Care Program. A number of the new tenants were patients at St. Joseph’s; they no longer required hospitalization but were seeking supportive housing so they can avoid re-hospitalization or homelessness and continue journeying toward wellness.
“The inability to discharge patients to a reliable and safe address within the community, creates a backlog within our mental health care system,” says Jodi Younger, vice president of patient care and quality at St. Joseph’s Health Care London. “Because of our partnership with Indwell and their enhanced supportive housing model, many of our patients now have a high quality place to call home and in turn, access and flow to inpatient beds within our mental health care program at Parkwood Institute has improved substantially. As such, more individuals are getting the supports they need, at the right time and in the right place.”
Indwell’s program model ensures that tenants are offered support that meets their unique needs. The staff team of 10 professionals provides nursing, addictions, peer and apartment support, as well as fostering food security. Staff work to build relationships and create community through recreational activities and connections to the broader community.
During a recent interview a tenant noted that “Woodfield Gate is a very open and caring environment, where you can grow and develop as a person without being worried about being put down and beaten up,” highlighting the previous real world struggles for people now having a home.
Indwell is planning to break ground this spring on its second London property at the corner of Dundas and English Street in London’s Old East Village. Scheduled to open early 2022, it includes 72 one and two-bedroom apartments at deeply affordable rents, along with commercial space on the ground floor.