Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Nunavut March 18, 2014 - 11:19 am

New campaign hopes to build trust and pride in Nunavut housing

Average annual cost of maintaining a single public housing unit is $23,000

NUNATSIAQ NEWS
A new NHC campaign hopes to encourage social housing tenants to take better care of their homes, and in turn, help reduce the costs to Nunavut's public housing system. (PHOTO BY SARAH ROGERS)
A new NHC campaign hopes to encourage social housing tenants to take better care of their homes, and in turn, help reduce the costs to Nunavut's public housing system. (PHOTO BY SARAH ROGERS)

The Government of Nunavut is encouraging social housing tenants to take better care of their units.

In a minister’s statement March 17, George Kuksuk, minister responsible for the Nunavut Housing Corp., told the legislative assembly about the corporation’s new tenant engagement campaign, which aims to inform residents about the real cost of public housing and encourage tenants to play a part in reducing those costs.

The average annual cost of maintaining one public housing unit is about $23,000 per year, Kuksuk said, and reducing that cost is one step in addressing the territory’s housing crisis.

“The tenant engagement campaign will help to improve communication between tenants and their local housing organizations,” Kuksuk told the assembly March 17. “It will also provide tenants with the information they need to help them properly care for their homes.”

One of the campaign’s first initiatives is the 2014 NHC housing calendar, which offers tips and advice on basic home maintenance. The calendars will be distributed to all public housing households

The campaign will eventually launch its own website, along with social media and radio initiatives, as a means to share how-to videos.

Kuksuk said the NHC’s goal is to build a “strong and trusting relationship with all public housing tenants.”

“A person’s home has a deep impact on all other aspects of their life,” Kuksuk said. “The Nunavut Housing Corp. takes great pride in the housing it provides to Nunavummiut, and hopes that everyone can share in this pride.”

The Kativik Municipal Housing Bureau in Nunavik launched a similar campaign called Pivallianiq in 2011, the same year the social housing agency spent more than $42 million on housing repairs.

As part of Pivallianiq, housing advisors visit the homes of tenants who agree to participate in the project and provide a kit containing home care products and an information video.

Participating tenants can also earn a certificate and be eligible for prizes.

It’s not clear what impact the program has had on social housing maintenance across the region.

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