Click here for the link to the article, "Homeless camp cleanup continues along Twelve Mile Creek".
What Our Clients Say
I am 67 years and have been in the housing first program since the beginning of 2019. Before I was accepted in the housing first program, I had been chronically homeless for two years and arrived at Southridge shelter on January 6, 2019. On my second night I was unable to get out of bed, discoloured, weak and helpless. EMS was called and I was taken to St. Catharine’s hospital. I don’t remember being taken to hospital but I do remember waking in the emergency department on January 8, 2019 and realized I had reached my rock bottom. I was diagnosed with pneumonia, MRSA, hepatitis C and weighed 128 pounds. I had been using substances daily since I retired at 58 years old, lost my housing at 60 years of age, had not seen or spoke to my daughter in two years and knew if I wanted to live I needed to make significant changes in my life. After 7 weeks of intense medical intervention, I was discharged from the hospital on Feb 22, 2019.
I began working closely with The Hope Center for my housing search and recovery while staying with a close friend in Welland. After seeing my motivation to be housed, I was enrolled in the housing first program as of March 1, 2019. The Hope Center assisted me with temporary housing in Niagara Falls and by May 1, 2019 I was happily housed in Port Colborne with my cat Simon.
Since being housed, I have been able to work on my personal health. I have been cured of my hepatitis C, MRSA, undergone replacement hip and knee surgery. The housing first program has assisted with my financial stability to maintain housing independently and rectify my tax debt with the CRA (I had not completed my taxes for 8 years). My greatest accomplishment since being housed is reuniting with my daughter. After years of distrust, our relationship is the best it has ever been and we speak daily. My second greatest accomplishment is to proudly state I have been in recovery since Feb 22, 2019.
My final goals with the program are to be re-housed to ensure my ongoing mobility as I secure my golden years and to mentor other individuals who require peer support. I would like to mentor individuals to share my spirit, strength and hope. I will also be participating in the “Lived Experience” focus group with the Homeless and Housing Action Plan through Niagara Region to share my experience and end homelessness.
Had I not been involved in the housing first program, my life would have remained in a state of misery, chaos and despair. I am beyond grateful for the second chance at life I have been given and everything this program has supported me with.