picture of 2035 Kennedy Rd.
2035 Kennedy Rd. Temporary Shelter – Delta Hotel

Location: 2035 Kennedy Rd.
Residents: Singles and couples of all genders aged 16+
Number of Beds: Up to 301 people
Opened: May 2020
Operator: Eva’s Initiative, Kennedy House, and Homes First Society

The City has been using the hotel at 2035 Kennedy Road for accommodation for people experiencing homelessness since early 2019.  The space was secured through a Request for Proposals process, and previous to the COVID-19 Pandemic, was used primarily to shelter refugee families.

As part of the City’s response to COVID-19, the City of Toronto has opened more than 25 new temporary sites to create physical distancing in the shelter system and provide space for people to move indoors from encampments, providing around 2,600 spaces in these new temporary shelters and hotel programs. The City worked quickly to save lives, protect the most vulnerable, and minimize the spread of COVID-19 in shelters and the community. In May 2020, the 2035 Kennedy Road location was converted to a temporary shelter. This service is operated by three community partners, Eva’s initiatives, Kennedy House and Homes First Society and is funded by the City of Toronto Shelter, Support, and Housing Administration Division (SSHA).

Learn more about the City’s services for those experiencing homelessness during COVID-19.

The City has contracted site management and services at 2035 Kennedy Road to Eva’s initiatives, Kennedy House and Homes First Society.

Individuals come to shelter sites with a range of needs, both material and physical. 2035 Kennedy Road is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and provides wrap-around support for shelter residents.

Shelter residents are given meals and program support on-site including case management, nursing, meals, harm reduction, housing supports and recreational programming. Further details are below:

  • Eva’s Initiatives
    • On-site Youth Services Workers, Housing Worker and Recreation Coordinator
    • Employment and Training programs
    • Education Enrollment & Supports
    • Life Skills Programs including Financial Literacy, Housing Access, Interpersonal Skills and Recreation
    • Family Reconnect Counselling Program
    • Weekly Virtual Psychiatric and Medical clinic
    • Harm Reduction Supports
  • Kennedy House
    • Emergency shelter and meals
    • On site housing (with two years post follow up), education and employment supports.
    • Referrals to community mental health/ counselling/ medical/ financial supports, and referrals to in house primary care through Inner City Health Associates located at The Delta
    • In-house clinical and life skills based programming and recreational activities (Yoga, movie nights, virtual group events with our other programs, paint nights etc.)
  • Homes First Society
    • Intensive Case Management Support includes a Housing Help Worker, Life Skills Worker and Community Engagement & Program Coordinator
    • Harm-reduction workshops (Parkdale Queen West) including staff and volunteer led group talks.
    • Inner City Health Associates supports which includes a full-time physician, nurses and pharmacists that provide in-person and virtual supports.
    • The Multi-Disciplinary Outreach Team (M-DOT) – More complex mental health supports for shelter residents.
    • Various recreational activities (bingo, movie night, square dancing, mask making, harm reduction kit making, men’s group, comedy night, TIFF Film talks, Flu shot clinic, bible study group, CPR training)
    • Weekly Newsletter to shelter residents in effort to remind everyone about COVID-19 protocols, the operator’s Good Neighbour Policy and any concerns that may have become trending-these are handed directly to shelter residents on a weekly basis.

Safety and security are a priority for the City. The City works to support the residents of the temporary shelter at 2035 Kennedy Road to be good neighbours. Homes First Society, Kennedy House and Eva’s Initiatives work closely with Shelter, Support and Housing Administration, Toronto Police Services, the community Shelter and Corporate Security at the City of Toronto to develop community safety measures for the location.

A Community Safety Team patrols the Village Green Square area 24 hours a day. Wearing yellow vests, they engage with shelter residents off property and address safety concerns, such as discarded needles. The Community Safety Team can be reached through One Community Solutions by telephone (24/7) at 647-688-8475 or 647-688-8927 and by email at securedbyus@gmail.com. Community members are encouraged to reach out to them if there is a safety issue in their community they feel needs to be addressed related to the temporary shelter.

Staff from Homes First Society, Kennedy House and Eva’s Initiatives are on-site 24/7. The site has ten contracted security guards that ensure the safety and security of the Delta Hotel property. Security guards patrol the entire property, including the interior, exterior and the connected parking structure. There are hotel security cameras on the main floor, also including the reception area and in the elevators. Externally, cameras are placed around entrance points.

Homes First society, Kennedy House and Eva’s Initiatives bring management practices that have proven successful at its other location. All service providers have protocols in place to respond to emergency situations, and staff are trained in de-escalation, conflict resolution and crisis prevention, intervention and management.

Representatives from the operators, Homes First society, Kennedy House and Eva’s Initiatives, have conducted community outreach and engagement, including the following:

  • Meeting with neighbouring condo buildings and businesses to connect, introduce themselves and provide contact details if anyone had any questions or concerns.
  • Liaising with Community Safety Teams on their engagement with shelter residents off property and supporting the teams to address safety concerns
  • Participation in Safety Walks with Toronto Police Services 42 Division and Metrogate community members
  • Participated in several online information sessions and safety talks in collaboration with the Community Safety Team and Toronto Police Services 42 Division
  • Engaged as panelist in town hall meetings with Ward 22 and larger Agincourt and Metrogate Community
  • Ongoing and regular meetings primarily with the Metrogate community, Resident Association representatives, Toronto Police Services 42 Division and Community Safety Teams
  • Resident clean-up crew completes a community clean-up multiple times per week
  • Responding timely to inquiries and community concerns via email, phone, zoom, etc.

Because of physical distancing restrictions, engagement events are online and over the phone rather than in person.

If community members want to get engaged, share feedback, and/or ask questions, they can contact operators directly at:

  • Homes First Society: Direct line to Shelter Staff – 647-455-0334
    • Ryan Evershed, Manager of Community Engagement & Client Programming. Email: Evershed@homesfirst.on.ca; Telephone: 647-455-1552
  • Kennedy House: Megan Dealhoy, Manager of Shelter Services
  • Eva’s Initiative: Monique Thompson, Residential Supervisor

General inquiries about services for those experiencing homelessness can be directed to homeless@toronto.ca.