The Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) is a community-based program that relies on communities to determine their own needs and to develop appropriate projects. The HPS supports 61 designated communities and some small, rural, northern and Aboriginal communities to develop local solutions to homelessness. Dufferin County is one of the designated communities where the Federal Government has made a commitment to maintain annual funding for housing and homelessness from 2014-2018.
Dufferin County is served by a Community Advisory Board (CAB), a steering committee that develops a Community Plan (CP). The CP priority is: “To reduce homelessness through a Housing First (HF) approach.” HF focuses on moving people who are experiencing chronic and episodic homelessness as rapidly as possible from the street or emergency shelter into permanent housing with supports that vary according to client need. HPS funds are invested in projects that support the community priorities identified in the plan. Currently Dufferin HPS helps fund a Housing First Support Coordinator.
CAB includes a range of partners from the public, not-for-profit and private sectors. These partners work together to develop plans for ending homelessness in their communities.
The County of Dufferin act as the Community Entity (CE) to flow HPS funds to CAB from the Federal Government.
The Dufferin CAB have joined the 20,000 Homes Campaign.
The 20,000 Homes Campaign is a national movement of communities working together to permanently house 20,000 of Canada’s most vulnerable homeless people by July 1, 2018. The campaign is spear headed by the Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness.
The campaign supports a grassroots non-partisan advocacy effort to build public support for ending homelessness and political support for renewed federal and provincial investment in housing and support services.
The campaign was inspired by the successful 100,000 Homes Campaign in the United States, but has been adapted to work in a Canadian context.
The campaign is based on the belief that homelessness is a national emergency requiring urgent and immediate action, where the time has come to stop managing homelessness, and start ending it.
CAB will complete at least one Registry (count of the homeless population) and we will engage volunteers who want to contribute to implementing a registry and taking forward action: neighbours, people with lived experience, local businesses, housing and service providers, faith-based groups and government agencies.
The 20,000 Homes Campaign will assist communities to implement the six (6) core elements of the campaign:
We cannot solve a problem without knowing its scope. We cannot solve a person’s homelessness until we know his or her needs and meet each person where they are at.
The campaign’s primary objective is to end chronic homelessness in 20 communities and to find permanent, safe, appropriate and affordable housing for 20,000 of Canada’s most vulnerable homeless people ensuring they have the support necessary to sustain it. We want to get people into housing first and fast.
We are committed to implementing Housing First as a philosophy and a practice in a way that makes sense in each community, understanding that Housing First programs can take different forms depending on the unique characteristics of each community and the needs of our homeless neighbours.
The campaign goal to end chronic homelessness in 20 communities and house 20,000 people by July 1, 2020 is intentionally time-bound, concrete and measurable. To keep our movement honest, accurate and continuously improving the campaign will include a user-friendly but rigorous data collection, analysis and reporting process.
Communities participating in the 20,000 Homes Campaign will be asked to undertake a community self-assessment to support improved housing placement rates and to begin the process of streamlining community processes toward the development of a coordinated homelessness system of care.
Every community has something they can teach other communities and things they can learn from others. Rather than working in relative isolation, the campaign will provide multiple avenues for sharing best practices and developing new solutions together.
Communities can become part of a grassroots non-partisan advocacy effort to build public and political support for ending homelessness.
At CAB’s meeting on Wednesday July 20th, 2016, the committee voted to join the 20,000 Homes campaign in order to strengthen and promote the ongoing work in the area of HF.
The committee then formed a ‘Project Leadership’ subcommittee which held their first meeting on Tuesday August 2, 2016 and started the ground work for the campaign.
The committee met weekly and consisted of representatives from the County of Dufferin (Housing Department), Supportive Housing In Peel (SHIP), Choices Youth Shelter, Family Transition.
Place (FTP) and Orangeville Food Bank.
Dufferin’s first Homeless Enumeration took place on October 17 & 18, 2016.
A second Project Leadership subcommittee was form on March 21, 2018 to work on the next count.
Dufferin’s second Homeless Enumeration will take place on Monday 14th and Tuesday 15th May 2018.
Rather than a full registry week the committee were mindful that a 2-day count may be more resource appropriate.