Regional and local representatives joined today at the Scotiabank Convention Centre in Niagara Falls to discuss best practices for ending homelessness in Niagara. Communities across the country are shifting from managing to ending homelessness and Niagara Region is continuously seeking to apply new knowledge and best practices to address the challenges we face in Niagara.
Guest speaker Iain De Jong, acclaimed professor, researcher, consultant, coach, and positive disruptor known for his work toward ending homelessness in Canadian and U.S. communities, engaged with region stakeholders in strategy, planning, and educating to move towards positive social change in Niagara. Mayor of Niagara Falls Jim Diodati, Regional Chair Jim Bradley, and Mayor of St. Catharines Walter Sendzik shared their thoughts on how Niagara needs to take action on the homelessness challenge - by growing together, supporting existing Regional initiatives, and embracing a Built for Zero mindset.
In 2018, service providers in Niagara provided assistance or support to over 1,800 unique households who were experiencing homelessness. Through collaborative events such as this presentation, the Region plans to foster a culture of learning, where all parties involved in this challenge will continuously share, seek, and apply new knowledge and skills to improve the outcome for some of the most vulnerable residents in Niagara.
A number of opportunities for the public to get involved in the Region’s Homelessness strategy will be launched in early 2020. In the meantime, individuals interested in learning more about Niagara’s 10-Year Housing and Homelessness Action Plan can visit the Region’s website. Our Action Plan provides a framework for local action on housing affordability and coordinating homelessness and related services.
"Regional Council is committed to healthy and vibrant communities in Niagara and shares the unified goal of enhancing the quality of life of some of our most vulnerable residents through affordable housing initiatives and related services."
~ Jim Bradley, Regional Chair
"Ending homelessness is not possible without collaboration. I look forward to building on the amazing work of staff who serve our vulnerable residents, to help coordinate supports and services, to continue a sense of urgency around ending homelessness, and to champion Niagara’s journey towards zero homeless."
~ Walter Sendzik, Mayor of St. Catharines
"Having so many sectors gathered at the event today, from political leaders to homelessness service providers, shows us the strong willingness of our community to continue growing together. I’m excited to see just how far this group can go when we work as a team."
~ Jim Diodati, Mayor of Niagara Falls
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