Who We Are

Housing First (HF) is an evidence-based program that has been shown to promote housing stability, quality of life, and community functioning for chronically homeless persons with mental illness and addictions in a large-scale, multi-site trial in Canada, At Home / Chez Soi, as well as several previous studies conducted in the U.S. (Aubry, Nelson, & Tsemberis, 2015).

The Canadian Housing First Network – Community of Interest (CHFN-COI) assists communities across Canada to develop, evaluate, and improve Housing First (HF) programs based on the Pathways model tested, adapted, and shown to be effective in the At Home / Chez Soi Demonstration Project.

The CHFN-CoI (formerly the Ontario Housing First Regional Network Community of Interest (OHFRN-CoI)), consist of HF champions, HF programs across Canada, policy-makers planners, managers, service-providers, researchers, and persons with lived experience, including representatives from the housing, health, and justice sectors and Indigenous housing and support providers.

The CHFN is hosted by the CAEH and Evidence Exchange Network (EENet) at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.

Community of Interest Leads

Steering Committee Members

Tim Aubry

University of Ottawa

Geoff Nelson

Wilfrid Laurier University

Angela Yip


Wally Czech

Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness (CAEH)

Lisa Medd

Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), Ottawa

Kathryn Gibb

Services & Housing in the Province (SHIP), Ontario

Kelly Goz

City of Windsor/SW5, Ontario

Taylor Jordan

Ontario Native Women’s Association

Pio Giralico

CMHA Toronto, Ontario

Don Robinson


Doug Pawson

End Homelessness St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador

Ty Silver

North End Community Health Centre, Halifax

Eric Macnaughton

University of British Columbia

Greg Bishop

Saint John Human Development Council, New Brunswick

Eric Latimer

Douglas Research Centre and McGill University, Quebec

Michelle Bilek



Mission & Values

The CHEN-COI will be guided by the key values of social justice and equity, inclusion of lived experience and peer support, reconciliation, and empowerment and consumer choice.

Our Goals


Build local capacity for HF programs.

Promote high quality implementation of the HF model that includes both fidelity to and adaptation of the model.

Promote continuous program improvement through the provision of training, the development of HF program standards, the exploration of accreditation standards.

Advocate and influence public policy related to Housing First.


Resources & News

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