Spruce Bough opened in May 2020, when the Yellowknife Women’s Society secured possession of the former Arnica Inn. The space was quickly mobilized as a COVID-19 isolation shelter for people experiencing homelessness and at high-risk of serious illness or death if they were to contract COVID-19. Today, Spruce Bough continues to house some of the most vulnerable members of the Yellowknife community, offering permanent supportive housing - tenancy is not time limited, and there is no expectation of graduation.
Differing from transitional housing, this program offers a long-term solution for people with complex needs who cannot live independently for a variety of reasons.
Each Spruce Bough resident has a unique life history, yet there are shared experiences of chronic homelessnes, complex and overlapping needs, and struggles with high housing costs in Yellowknife. All supports at Spruce Bough are provided using a person-centred approach, with a commitment to being compassionate, non-judgmental, and reducing potential harms.