Housing is a Human Right

Jul 29 2019

ACTO 2019 Fact SheetUntil we ensure housing supply for the marginalized, displaced and excluded, the homeless, those at risk of homelessness living under prolonged stress and fear of displacement, immigrants, refugees, low wage earners, youth and seniors, our mantra will remain: "Housing is first and foremost a human right for the majority". It is not an investment, not a savings account, not an economic development or profit making tool for a some. See the new fact sheet from the Advocacy Centre for Tenants Ontario and our local tenants issues and concerns.

Festival of Neighbourhoods, Invaluable Resource

Jul 2 2019

We can’t help but notice places near our homes that could be improved with a small change, or how our growing city could potentially impact our neighbourhoods. How to harness all the great ideas is best done by sharing and recording them through neighbourhood gatherings. On that journey, the Festival of Neighbourhoods has proven itself to be an invaluable set of tools and resources. Read more in the July E-Neighbour about the Schneider Creek story: "Making our Neighbourhood Great!" and take the Event-in-a-Trailer survey by July 8th to let us know how we can create even better tools and resources for you.

52nd Annual General Meeting

Jun 25 2019

Membership 2019ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING, JUNE 25, 6 PM to 7:30 PM at St John Church in Kitchener, entrance from Duke Street. Nominations for the Board & Membership Call 

We are encouraged by the political will and organizational leadership in Waterloo Region that is bringing us closer around common problems in pursuit of common solutions: affordable housing, safe consumption sites, social and economic inclusion, equity and democratic participation. We can best be of service if we amplify lived experience voices across the board and continue creating safer spaces for conversations that do not shy from difference and opposing views.

Lived Experience Groups Joining the Anti-Poverty Hearings

Jun 20 2019

 Lack of affordability in the KW housing market impacts many residents, especially those who are low income. Through the Voices From the Margins project led by the Interfaith Social Assistance Reform Coalition (ISARC), a hearing was held in Kitchener on June 18th that allowed members of different lived experience groups to share their stories. The Participant Action Groups, Disabilities and Human Rights, Awareness of Low-Income Voices, and Alliance Against Poverty all had representatives at the hearing who spoke about their hardships of living on low income or no income: fear of not having a permanent home, inadequate income to cover basic needs, disruptions in the services provided, and the impact of housing instability and homelessness on one’s mental health and well-being.

Tenants Annual Meeting June 18

May 30 2019

RENT AGM 2019Have tenants' voices been lost? Who is paying the price? At the annual meeting on June 18, 6:30pm at St John Church, tenants can learn more about the RENT association, about tenant organizing in general, and what supports and resources we can rely on. Before you come, you can read the report from the tenants forum held on April 9th and think more about the relationships among people in your building or renters on your street, about the communication with landlords, changes in neighbourhoods due to constructions, and mutual supports.

Neighbourhood Resiliency in Emergencies

May 24 2019

May E Neighbour BannerNatural disasters, such as floods and fires, hitting communities far and near have been featuring prominently in the media as we talk more about the climate crisis. What, as neighbourhoods, can we do to be more resilient in the case we are hit by such an event? Trust among the neighbours is the not-so-secret ingredient. "It is extremely important that you get to know your neighbours beforehand, so that you know who is elderly, who has young children, pets, may have a disability." Steve LaRochelle, Emergency Management, City of Kitchener (May E-Neighbour).

Tax Clinic Scoop 2019

May 17 2019

Free Tax Clinics Our tax clinic team completed 420 returns this March and April, and processed 2016 and 2017 returns which was offered only by a few clinics. Extraordinary accomplishment by 8 extraordinary volunteers working evenings and weekends for 8 weeks.  The volunteers also responded to over 100 T1 adjustments, assessment notices & inquires, including CPP applications, and electricity bill relief. There are many ways in which we can improve the process for the next tax season internally and we hope to provide valuable feedback together with other tax clinics in the region towards greater supports to the volunteer run clinics from the federal government in the future. 

Viewpoints on Poverty

May 9 2019

Viewpoints on PovertyThe community will have a chance to continue Exploring Life in the Margins conversations. 'Viewpoints on Poverty' is an inclusive evening for discussion and discovery on the theme of nonviolence and poverty elimination. Join us together with Alliance Against Poverty and the Waterloo Region Crime Prevention Council in exploring our experiences, dreams, fears too, and creating unique perspectives that go beyond life in the margins. We are all responsible for our own living in the margins and at the Social Development Centre, we also dream of a more unified perspective across different socio-economic groups in Waterloo Region when it comes to poverty elimination. 

Do No Harm! ALIVe Open Letter

May 8 2019

ALIVEAwareness of Low Income Voices group (ALIVe) has been around since2000 and its role is to bring a positive voice of people with experience of poverty to the public.  Faced with the affordable housing crisis and talking to a number of leaders and decision-makers, the group has sent an open letter to all the provincial and municipal elected officials. They are asking that in every decision made, politicians remember not only who will benefit, but also what problems may be created for the people in place; remember what community will be disrupted to provide space for a new community; how current actions can benefit everyone in the community and not just those who might move in. And, above all, they are asking that whatever politicians do, they strive to do no harm!

Summer Jobs 2019

May 6 2019

Summer Jobs 2019Community Information, Social Development, Neighbourhood Engagement, are you truly passionate to learn and serve the community in these fields of practice? These positions are open to youth between 15 and 30 years who are facing barriers to employment or professional development. Thy offer exposure to a broad range of activities and social issues, as well as opportunities to take initiative and test different ways of doing things. Candidates are invited to apply by May 24th including a resume and a cover letter stating the position you are applying to, why you are interested in that position and how your studies, experience and skills make you a good candidate.