Changing the Conversation – Integrating Community Voices in Solving Homelessness in London (Northeast Community Conversations Group)

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Join the Northeast Community Conversations (NECC) group as they look beyond policy and government to hear real stories from citizens with lived experiences, to delve deeper into the state of homelessness, to get a clearer, realistic picture on its impact on the City of London, identify barriers which have not been addressed yet, and looking at best practices and ways for reducing homeless experiences in our London.

What: Conversation about solving homelessness in London
When: Wednesday, November 30, 2016 @ 6:30 p.m. (to 9:00 p.m.) (doors open 5:45 p.m.)
Where: Abundant Life Community Church, 640 Grosvenor Street, London

Advanced registration is required; sign up for the Eventbrite here: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/changing-the-conversation-integrating-community-voices-on-homelessness-in-london-tickets-29308865606

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Tent City Forum

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Come and learn about the founding, struggles and success of Victoria’s SuperIntent City, an encampment of people experiencing homelessness that led to the creation of hundreds of units of new housing.

What: Forum on Victoria, B.C.’s SuperIntent City
When: November 1, 2016 at 6:30 p.m.
Where: London Public Library Central Branch, 251 Dundas Street, Tonda Room

Featuring:
Ana McBee (SIC Society, Super InTent City)
Kim A. Hines (LEAC, Committee to End Homelessness Victoria)

Presented by the Lived Experience Advisory Council with support from the Maytree Foundation in conjunction with the National Conference on Ending Homelessness.

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Call for Volunteers for CAEH Conference 2016

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The City of London, in cooperation with the Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness (CAEH) is seeking volunteers to assist with the Canadian Conference on Ending Homelessness held in LondonNovember 2 to November 4, 2016.  Volunteers are needed throughout the conference.

They are requesting that you forward your completed application package (electronic application is below) to the Board of Directors, staff and volunteers.

Please see the attached information and application for details on how volunteers can support the Conference and help showcase the City of London.  Please submit applications by Monday, September 26, 2016 to the Homeless Prevention Team, City of London at jjackson at london.ca.

Please note, volunteers must be 18 years of age or older and have a current Police Vulnerable Sector Check or Letter of Verification from their place of work or volunteer.

To learn more about CAEH and this event visit their website at www.caeh.ca

CAEH16 Volunteer Flyer

World Homeless Action Day 2016

World Homeless Action Day 2016

Save the date! – the London Homeless Coalition is planning several events to recognize World Homeless Action Day this October.

When: Thursday, October 6, 2016
Soup N Bread: Free meal and free store, starting at 4:00 p.m. in Covent Market Square
Agency Walk: Starting from Convent Market Square at 5:00 p.m. and 5:15 p.m., ending at Campbell Memorial Park
Memorial Service: Starting at 6:00 p.m. at Campbell Memorial Park

Please share our poster! (JPG above or PDF below)

World Homeless Action Day 2016 poster

Special thanks to contributing partners:

 

SPDAT Training

Solving Homelessness Together in London
Service Prioritization Decision Assistance Tool (SPDAT) Training

When:  Monday, September 19, 2016
Time:  9:00 am – 4:00 pm
Where:  BMO Centre, London Optimist Sports Centre, 295 Rectory Street, London  N5Z 2A7

The City of London’s Homeless Prevention Team invites you to attend a day of inspiring training by Iain DeJong, CEO and President of OrgCode Consulting on the Service Prioritization Decision Assistance Tool (SPDAT). SPDAT is currently used in over 100 communities across Canada, the United States and Australia.

By attending the training you will join other service providers to learn together and be certified on how to use the SPDAT to support individuals, youth and families experiencing homelessness in working towards their housing stability.

What is the SPDAT? The Service Prioritization Decision Assistance Tool (SPDAT) is an acuity assessment tool for homeless serving organizations and staff working with individuals/families experiencing homelessness to prioritize service. It is an objective approach to assessing needs for housing stability based upon evidence. The SPDAT tools are designed to help guide case management, improve housing stability outcomes and track changes over time, and are applied at the initial assessments and at ongoing intervals.

Why attend? SPDAT is a standardized assessment tool increasingly being used by homeless serving organizations in London. Using SPDAT helps us work together with a common assessment and guides our understanding of the needs, referrals and priority of individuals and families.  When you have completed the training, you can start using the SPDAT immediately.

Who’s Invited: London’s homeless serving organizations, including their Executive Directors, Managers and Front-line Staff.

Facilitator: Iain DeJong, CEO and President, OrgCode Consulting

Web Site:    http://www.orgcode.com/

Please RSVP by answering the registration questions below and emailing to Homeless Prevention at homelessprevention@london.ca  by Wednesday, September 14, 2016.

Name:
Organization:
Position:
Dietary Concerns:
Have you taken the full SPDAT training? Yes or No
When:
Where:

 Light Lunch and Refreshments will be provided.

This session is being hosted by the City of London Homeless Prevention Team.

London’s Homeless Prevention System is a coordinated and integrated individual and family-centred Housing First approach that is outcome focused and designed to address, reduce and prevent homelessness in London.

Job Posting – Mission Services

The Community Mental Health Programs, of Mission Services of London, has an opening for a Full-Time (40 hrs/week) Transitional Community Support Worker. This role will work within the community, providing individuals with short-term crisis management support. The Transitional Community Support Worker’s role will focus on preventing Emergency Room visits as well as providing urgent support to clients identified by ED and or Hospital Departments as requiring community-based mental health support.

For more information or to apply, see the full job posting below.

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New HPS Funding Available

Housing First Homeless Prevention Funding Application 2016-2018

In cooperation with the London Homeless Coalition, the City of London is accepting applications for Housing First Homeless Prevention Projects. The funding is provided by The Government of Canada under the Homelessness Partnering Strategy.

Funding is available from April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2018 for short term projects.

Eligible projects must fall under London’s Homeless Prevention System Implementation Plan, apply a Housing First approach; and, be time limited to March 31, 2018.

Deadline to apply for these funds is Friday, September 16, 2016.

For more information and to apply visit: http://www.london.ca/residents/homeless-prevention/Pages/be-involved.aspx

Job Posting – Housing-Focused Street Outreach Worker

London CAReS is a collaborative initiative involving three host/funded agencies: Addiction Services of Thames Valley (ADSTV), The Unity Project, and Regional HIV/AIDS Connection. This collaborative initiative is aimed at improving the health outcomes of individuals experiencing homelessness. London’s model is based on the concept of rapid re-housing with supports. This model has been successfully used in Hostels to Homes, Street to Homes and other housing-first approaches.

The outreach team’s role is to establish a presence and a rapport with individuals who are at urgent risk of becoming homeless or those who are chronically or persistently homeless. This work will take place year round along the river paths, parks and streets in and around the core downtown areas of London.

The successful candidate will be joining a team of outreach staff who will actively engage people by applying the principles of housing first and harm reduction. Through relationship building, outreach workers assess the needs of participants through use of standardized assessment tools.

Outreach workers will assist participants to acquire housing, identify intervention recommendations, develop individual service plans and support this transition through use of intensive case management.

For more information about this position or to apply, see the full job posting below. The deadline to apply is Friday, July 1, 2016.

Job Posting Street Outreach Worker (Relief) 06 2016

A Canadian Model for Housing and Support of Veterans Experiencing Homelessness

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The Canadian Model for Housing and Support for Veterans Experiencing Homelessness (Evaluation Project) was a two-year evaluation project from May 2012 to June 2014 funded through the federal Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS), with in-kind support from Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC), the City of London and the four housing with support sites. This participatory action research project developed and evaluated a model of housing and individualized programming to best meet the unique needs of CAF veterans experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness.

Objectives

  • Enhanced coordination and integration in the provision of housing and other support services for veterans who are experiencing homelessness
  • Improved access and attachment (formal linkage or connection) for previously homeless veterans to affordable, stable, transitional or permanent accommodation
  • Successful transition out of homelessness into sustainable, affordable accommodation, achieving cost savings in the process

To read more about this initiative, visit the project website at www.homelessprevention.ca.

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Homeless Prevention and Housing Recommendations from the Mayor’s Advisory Panel on Poverty

cover page of report from the Mayor's Advisory Panel on Poverty, London for All

Last week the Mayor’s Advisory Panel on Poverty presented their report to City Council. The Chair of the London Homeless Coalition, Abe Oudshoorn, was a member of this advisory panel, and was able to contribute to the discussion of homeless prevention and affordable housing.

The full report of the advisory panel can be found here. The pages with just the homeless prevention and housing recommendations can be seen in the PDF at the end of this post, below.

Homeless Prevention and Housing – What we can do in the next 12 months

12. Build a culture of practice around effective implementation of the Housing First approach. Housing First, with appropriate supports, is a foundational principle of London’s Homeless Prevention and Housing Plan9. Many organizations are well-versed in the approach, but we must ensure that our service system translates theories and principles into competent practice in order to realize the full benefits of Housing First.

13. Engage landlords in keeping more people housed. When Londoners shared their recommendations for housing, they emphasized the importance of working with landlords to keep more people housed. Increased emphasis on engagement of landlords and other housing partners can create a more collaborative approach to housing and in turn generate innovative ideas to support tenancy.

14. Invest in housing allowances to support flexible, permanent housing stability for individuals and families. Housing allowances benefit individuals and families by providing increased stability in their housing; this creates space and security for people to move away from crisis mentalities and begin planning for pathways out of poverty.

15. Implement strategies that assist in housing women at risk of or experiencing homelessness. We know that women are a population at increased risk of living in poverty. Women are more likely to be lone parents, to be at risk of partner abuse, and to have limited – and lower-paying – employment opportunities. Housing strategies for women are critical. We need to support existing collaborative strategies aimed at supporting women across the housing continuum.

16. Implement strategies that support housing youth at risk of or experiencing
homelessness. Youth face increased risk of poverty. We must have a specific
and immediate focus on youth in order to have effective early intervention and
rapid rehousing.

17. Leverage funding and invest in the regeneration of existing London and
Middlesex Housing Corporation (LMHC) properties. Some LMHC housing
properties are aging and require redevelopment. Through the proposed actions
of the Housing Development Corporation (HDC), key stakeholders – including
current residents – should be engaged in the development of plans to enhance
housing and create additional affordable housing options.

What changes will we see?

  • Broad, effective Housing First practices embedded in the work of organizations
    working on homelessness in London
  • Strategies that reduce the number of landlords evicting people living with low income
    from rental properties
  • Increased number of individuals and families achieving housing stability
  • Effective implementation of women- and youth-focused housing stability strategies
    that seek to move people from homelessness to housing
  • Tangible plans for redeveloped LMHC properties

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