Guyana Community House (Toronto) is an organized effort to create an affordable housing cooperative and community centre for the Guyanese Canadian community in the Greater Toronto Area.

There are over 200,000 Guyanese-Canadians, with the vast majority of them living in the Greater Toronto Area.

Inspired by the efforts of other ethnocultural communities, our project aims to bring the Guyanese-Canadian community together in a space that would provide affordable housing and social services to those who need it (seniors, single-parent households, new immigrants, etc.) and establish a community centre to serve our cultural and social needs.

Guyana Community House (Toronto) is organized by a diverse group of volunteers from the Guyanese-Canadian diaspora. If you are interested in getting involved, please message us or send an email to [email protected]

What do we do?

GCH is working to secure a site for a new build multi-purpose community facility in 2021 with the Affordable Housing Committee at York University (AHC), and non-profit housing developer Home Opportunities.

Operating as a united front under the banner of the York Housing Coalition, our goal is to complete a feasibility study of the proposed site, to identify and secure necessary permits and approvals from the City of Toronto, and to commence construction planning and non-profit developer liaison by the end-of-the-year 2022.

GCH has drafted and proposed a memorandum of understanding with the York Housing Coalition as to allocate a significant portion of the site - 3 acres of land - and the construction/development costs financed and secured by Home Opportunities, to rental housing designated to Guyanese-Canadian and Caribbean individuals and families.

The GCH aims to develop this mixed-use housing typography in multiple stages as a means of leveraging land-equity to finance the construction of eight-hundred (800) single-family units that will house fourteen-hundred (1400) people. Land will be leveraged to finance the cost of the first tower development, which will then be used to finance the cost of the second tower development, which will then be leveraged to finance the cost of ground floor mixed community amenity and commercial spaces.

Our organization has submitted an application to the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) to access Solutions Lab funding for financing costs associated with our efforts.

These include the cost of community consultations, research/design studies, and a series of community-based focus groups to determine how best to allocate and design these units to their respective communities (i.e. seniors, newcomers/refugees….), and any amenity and commercial spaces.

The GCH aims to launch the Solutions Lab design and research initiative by July 1, 2022 for a term of eighteen (18) months, concluding December 30, 2023.