There have been COVID-19 outbreaks at nine of Toronto's shelters.
Their house burned down last year. Now they're giving back to vulnerable locals.
Rejection is one of the major reasons kids leave home, and not all homeless shelters are safe.
It is clear that our inability to recognize "hidden homelessness" contributes to the denial of basic human rights and creates social exclusion.
I live in a beautiful relatively new glass tower adjacent to King George Skytrain. It's a Concord Pacific development. My building has a concierge, games room, movie theatre, bowling alley, fully-equipped gym, steam room, among other amenities. Holland Park, SFU Surrey, and Central City Mall are all across the street. I have a secure underground parking spot in the heart of the new Surrey City Centre. I basically have been living in my own protected bubble for the last couple of years. So I broke out.
Budget 2017 earmarked a whopping $11 billion for housing and homelessness. There's no doubt this will have a big impact. However, these funds must not only build affordable housing, they must align with poverty reduction strategies and mental health and recovery initiatives if we are to truly reduce long-term homelessness.
Nothing suggested this person was dealing with serious issues: they wore the coolest new sneakers, played video games late into the night, and often would speak in a mix of Internet jargon and meme jokes. There was no way this youth could be homeless, I thought.
When there are no beds, homeless youth often resort to sleeping in garages, in abandoned trailers and buildings or even worse, in forests and fields and other hidden places across the region. They are vulnerable to illness, emotional trauma, criminal threats and violence.
A few winters ago, I spent one extraordinary night wandering the streets of York Region, experiencing first-hand what homeless youth from our community go through every night. Organizers wanted us to better understand what homeless youth in York Region face every night.
We need access to safe, affordable housing now. The government must act. There is so much trauma and pain I could have avoided if I had only received the support I needed. I experienced homelessness for 1,346 days. I should have never been without a home.