In 1954, the Centre was founded by the Council for Social Services of the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa to provide support to Anglican men who were preparing to re-enter society from jail. As services expanded and changed, the Centre moved into 454 King Edward Avenue in 1976 and took its new name from the address. It kept the name when it moved to Murray Street in 2000 and then back again to the renovated space at 454 King Edward Avenue in 2012.
The ministry evolved over time to support the emerging needs of our community. As the services changed and expanded, new space requirements were accommodated by various downtown Anglican churches including St. Alban the Martyr at 454 King Edward Avenue. This is where the name “Centre 454” was born.
Centre 454’s objectives broadened to incorporate companionship through a social recreation program, emotional support for isolated and socially disadvantaged men and women through a supportive counselling program, and practical supports such as laundry, showers, and clothing.
In 2000, when Centre 454 moved to 216 Murray Street, near King Edward Avenue, the name was retained since, in the words of one wise participant, “How else would people find this great place?” And we didn’t have to change the name when we moved back to 454 King Edward Avenue in 2012.
As our participants strive to meet their daily living needs, the services have expanded to include “in-reach,” where other organizations provide specialized services at Centre 454.
Centre 454 has a contingent of volunteers who have come to us from various sources. As part of our commitment to train future leaders in the fight against homelessness, we work in partnership with the post-secondary institutions in our area to provide learning opportunities for social work students.
The Centre is supported financially through grants from the City of Ottawa, the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa, and the Government of Canada. We also receive contributions from private donors, parishes, corporations, and small business supporters. We also practical supplies from many groups and individuals.
The Centre’s membership in the Alliance to End Homelessness and the Ottawa Day Programs Coalition keep us connected to other stakeholders in the fight for some of the most vulnerable people in Ottawa.
The community at Centre 454 will continue to welcome people into our midst as long as we are needed.