September 24, 2018

HIV Prenatal Care Home Opens In Saskatoon

The Governments of Canada and Saskatchewan, along with the City of Saskatoon, Sanctum Care Group and Stewart Properties, officially opened Sanctum 1.5, a new 10-unit affordable rental housing project that will help support pre- and post-natal women living with or at risk of HIV/AIDS.

Sanctum 1.5 is unique in Saskatchewan and Canada, filling a gap of housing and support, and improving health outcomes.  This will be the first housing project in Saskatchewan geared toward the needs of pregnant women who are struggling with polysubstance use, and are HIV-positive or at risk of contracting HIV.

Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, on behalf of Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) and Social Services Minister and Minister Responsible for the Saskatchewan Housing Corporation (SHC) Paul Merriman along with Health Minister Jim Reiter, City of Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark, Sanctum Care Group Executive Director Katelyn Roberts and Stewart Properties President Tyler Stewart, made the announcement today.

“This project, and the partnerships behind it, is a wonderful example of what can take place when we work together to support individuals and families in greatest housing need,” Merriman said.  “Our government strongly believes in partnering with community members to improve the quality of life for Saskatchewan people.  We are delighted to help make this project a reality and continue to keep Saskatchewan strong.”

“The opening of this new housing complex is a positive investment because what is opening today is so much more than a home,” Clark said.  “The announcement today represents a pathway to a strong quality of life for some of our most vulnerable citizens with housing and community supports being offered together.  Safe housing is important for everyone, and I would like to thank Stewart Properties and Sanctum for collaborating to deliver on such an important initiative for our entire community.”

“Sanctum 1.5 is the first of its kind in Canada, it is an innovative model created in response to the unique needs of women in this community,” Roberts said.  “It’s about changing the way we respond to the most vulnerable, creating services and supports that simultaneously address the medical and psycho-social needs of the clients we serve, while also eliminating the systematic barriers that perpetuate inequality in this community.”

Quick Facts:

  • The Government of Canada, through CMHC, and the Government of Saskatchewan, through SHC, jointly contributed up to $765,500 to this project under the Canada-Saskatchewan Investment in Affordable Housing Agreement.
  • Additional funding of $100,000 was provided by the City of Saskatoon.
  • The Grey Nuns of Montreal are contributing $1 million toward ongoing operations of Sanctum 1.5.
  • Located at 133 Avenue O South in the Pleasant Hill neighbourhood of Saskatoon, the project consists of a 10-bedroom, bungalow-style rooming house with a common kitchen and four bathrooms on the main floor, and service/office/recreational space and storage in the basement.  It is 350 m2 (3,800 f2) on the main level.
  • Support services will be provided by Sanctum Care Group, a community-based organization that works directly with populations affected by HIV/AIDS, addictions, mental illness, homelessness and poverty.
  • Sanctum will provide a three-pronged approach of care:  harm reduction and housing (including stability and addiction services to reduce the harm associated with drug/alcohol use during pregnancy); pre- and post-natal health care (access to specialized nursing, an infectious disease specialist, family physician, gynecologist and antiretroviral treatments to prevent the HIV transmission to the unborn fetus); and prevention of future child welfare involvement (supports and planning to nurture parenthood and prevent children from entering the child protection system).
  • Stewart Properties, a private corporation, is constructing the project.  Stewart Properties owns and manages a portfolio of approximately 200 units, and includes a combination of affordable, low- to moderate-income and market-rental units.
  • The Government of Canada is currently rolling out its National Housing Strategy (NHS)—an ambitious 10-year, $40 billion plan that will create 100,000 new housing units and lift 530,000 families out of housing need, as well as repair and renew more than 300,000 housing units and reduce chronic homelessness by 50 per cent.
  • The NHS is built on strong partnerships between federal, provincial and territorial governments, and on continuous engagement with others, including municipalities, Indigenous governments and organizations, and the social and private sectors to make a meaningful difference in the lives of Canadians.
  • This project supports the Government of Saskatchewan’s goals to increase the supply of supportive housing options for people who are “hard-to-house” or at risk of homelessness.

Associated Links:

  • As Canada's authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry.  For more information, please visit or follow us on Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.  To find out more about the National Housing Strategy, visit
  • In October 2012, the Government of Saskatchewan released the Saskatchewan Plan for Growth: Vision 2020 and Beyond, which sets out the government’s vision for a province of 1.2 million people by 2020.  The plan identifies principles, goals and actions to ensure Saskatchewan is capturing the opportunities and meeting the challenges of a growing province.  Since 2007, the Government of Saskatchewan has invested more than $780 million to develop or repair over 16,000 housing units across our province.  To learn more, visit