Changing Times March 2021
Society of Saint Vincent de Paul - National Housing Campaign
Safe, Secure and Affordable Housing is a Human Right!
In concert with the launch of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul's Canada-wide, multi-year National Action Plan on housing, this is the second in a series of newsletters to help you and your Conference address the housing needs in your community. We hope and pray the content in this and future editions will inform and inspire us to serve in new and holistic ways!
WHAT IS YOUR CONFERENCE'S FIRST STEP?
Our National Action Plan provides a framework to help each Conference take steps to help neighbours in need of housing in their community. Pray and discern what will be your first step:
- Listen to our neighbours to discover what their true housing needs are and what solutions they feel will work best for them. See the CHANGING TIMES February 2021 issue.
- Connect and help direct your neighbours to housing supports (agencies, charities and government services) already active in your community. Need help to determine where those services are? See our Champions Corner for more info!
- Advocate for change! Reach out to your government decision-makers at all levels to be a voice for change! We will soon be providing a platform to make it easy to write to your MPP's and MP's about housing concerns that matter to you and to those you serve!
- Create housing to serve those in need! Is your council ready to build a basement apartment or an addition to your home or to invest in a property for a lodging home or multi-unit residence? Reach out to us for guidance and support in this exciting initiative!
- Become agents of positive change! Develop a vision, pray, network, design and implement a plan custom-ized to the needs in your community. Many Conferences throughout Canada and beyond are actively engaged in housing solutions. Let's learn from each other to better understand how we can contribute to the "housing health" of those we serve. Share your story with us today at email@example.com!
Become a housing champion for your Conference or Council!
Every Conference and, perhaps, every Council will benefit from having a housing champion. This individual or committee will…
- become knowledgeable about the NAP on housing
- communicate key points of the NAP to local conference presidents
- work with conference presidents to adopt action plans as detailed in the NAP and use them as a starting point to design measures that would work best in that area/city/province
- work with conference presidents to have social justice reps that can also act as the "housing rep" for the conference, to ensure housing and the homeless are monthly agenda items
- follow up with social justice reps and presidents to mentor, encourage, inform and educate on housing related topics encourage the sharing of information at the local, provincial and national levels
- reach out to your local housing agencies, governments and charities to become aware of existing and future programs helping to affordably house, to keep people housed and to support residents in your community (these programs can enhance the actions that your Conference and Councils are taking to help our neigh-bours in need).
VINCENTIANS IN ACTION!
Click here to find out how a Vincentian created housing for the homeless in Hamilton!
For the greater good
As we gather this important information, it will be helpful for all of us to have an online portal for sharing the challenges and solutions we discover with all Vincentians coast to coast. Please forward your experiences to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
With your input, we will work hard to include all good-news stories, within this monthly newsletter. We will add further resources and stories at www.ssvp.ca/housing.
Inspire and attract new Vincentians
36% of Canadians have been homeless themselves or know someone who has been homeless. Our focus on affordable housing may compel several parishioners to become members of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. Ask them to join us today!