Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Big Issue Poem

Here is a poem printed in the UK Big Issue this week by Jason Obaseki (The Big Issue, page 40 Christmas Edition, 2013. UK)

Searching for Something?
Waiting for eternity

I'm searching for a something, for something my soul thirsts
I've no rest till I find it, no balm to soothe my hurts
I'm looking for the answer but the question's ill defined
I'm looking for some wisdom of an everlasting kind
I'm wanting to be someone no hollow clanging star
A person with real substance and clothed with glorious power
I'm looking for a concept of high and noble birth
Alive in hearts of thousands amongst whom is true mirth
I'm looking for eternity, for wisdom health and power
For joy that is unspeakable, for beauty like a flower
I now have found a something to quench my soul's deep thirst
I've true peace now I've found Him His voice soothes all my hurts.
I now have found the answer the questions become clear
The wisdom that's eternal Walk in God's holy fear
You soon will be admired A bright and burning star
No character is greater than God's and His great power
I've found the highest concept A saviour's dying love
He's lived in lives of countless, who lived in love for love
Now I'm waiting for eternity for wisdom health and power
For joy that is unspeakable for beauty like a flower.

Wishing all our clients, community, sponsors, volunteers and Board a very Merry Christmas John Gregory - @gregiej

Monday, December 23, 2013

Returning soon

I will be returning soon to Ontario. Where did 2 years go? It whistled by. It has been an amazing two years and I feel so lucky to have such wonderful personal opportunities. I am very much looking forward to be back in Ontario in January and again able to engage in volunteering to support Milton Transitional Housing. As you reflect and start to think about 2014 think about pledging your time and energy to Milton Transitional Housing. I look forward to meeting and talking with you.

Hope 4 Holidays

This is a time of year when we really think about those in need, most especially those at risk of homelessness and those that are and have been homeless. Crisis UK says it expects 4,000 to visit its centres today up 18% from the same time last year. Crisis UK, Shelter and others are working hard to care for the homeless in need of shelter. In Milton, you can support the work of Milton Transitional Housing through its Hope 4 Holidays campaign

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Octavia Hill - social reformer

I have been reading Gillian Darley's book 'Octavia Hill - Social reformer and founder of the National Trust. This detailed read describes Octavia's how from the 1870s until her death she was the pioneer and driving force behind the establishment of social housing in poverty stricken London. Her influence and model spread to the USA, Germany and other cities in England. What we now refer to as affordable housing is largely because of her work. In 1898 Octavia wrote about what her workers would inherit "Not a system, not an association, not dead formulas. We shall leave them a few houses, purified and improved, a few new and better ones built, a certain record of thoughtful and loving management, a few open spaces, some of which will be more beautiful than they would have been, but what we care most to leave them is not any tangible however great, not any memory, however good, but the quick eye to see, the true soul to measure, the large hope to grasp the mighty issues of the new and better days to come - greater ideals, greater hope and patience to realise both." Tristram Hunt wrote "Octavia Hill was one of Britain's pioneering social reformers. From housing to civil society, welfare to open spaces, she blazed a trail for us to follow".

Annual report July 2012 - June 2013

It is great to see the latest wonderful annual report charting the tremendous work and advancement of Milton Transitional Housing - from Hope to Home. This annual report includes a message from Executive Director, Carolyn Dyck who joined the team in June of this year. Arnold Huffman, Chair of the Board adds his own articulate and powerful message. He pays tribute to Ruth Parkinson and Lorna Turner who "had the care and compassion to see homelessness as a problem in the community, and had the courage to do something about it. They took an idea and made it reality". I am really pleased to see this recognition of everything they have done and inspired in others. Finally there are updates from each of the committees with photos from some of the events. Importantly it also recognises the sponsors who have enabled Milton Transiational Housing to help clients in our community.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Milton Community Profile

I recommend you read this important new publication examining the demographic and socio-economic characteristics of the Milton Community. This edited summary is supplied by Milton Transitional Housing September 2013. The report includes summary comments on the data presented. Congratulations to all the team involved. It does illustrate the lack of available low income rental property and growth of the Milton population.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Milton Farmers' Market stall

Don't forget to catch us at the Milton Farmers' Market on August 10 in front of Knox Presbyterian Church - learn more about our organization and get a free tattoo

Monday, July 1, 2013

Happy Canada Day - come to Milton Fairgrounds

Milton Transitional Housing has a booth at the Milton Fairgrounds for Canada Day until 5pm. Free tattoos! Come and see us and happy Canada Day

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Lighthouse Shelter expected to get 10 additional beds

Housing options are often limited for the homeless with serious mental health and addiction problems according to a regional report described by the Milton Canadian Champion inside Halton website. Housing options are often limited for the homeless with serious mental health and addiction problems a regional report revealed. The demand for a place to stay often outweighs the supply, with only four beds available in Halton for this “hard to house client group” through the Canadian Mental Health Association. In an effort to tackle the issue, Halton Region is partnering with CMHA to develop and implement a Safebeds program at Salvation Army’s Lighthouse Shelter in Oakville. The details of this partnership were revealed through a report prepared by the social and community services department and supported by the Region’s health and social services committee at its meeting Tuesday With regional council’s approval at its meeting May 29, program plans are expected to move ahead with the Oakville shelter poised to receive an additional 10 beds that will be exclusively available to individuals with mental health and addiction issues. Screening and admissions for the use of these beds will be done by CMHA, which will be funding the project and providing on-site 24-hour counseling permanently through two staff members. These counsellors will also be available to support the Salvation Army’s other clients that are housed in the existing 30 beds at the Lighthouse Shelter.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Join us for a Team Gathering on June 10

As a supporter of MTH, we are inviting you to come out to our regular bi-monthly gatherings to learn more about the housing crisis in Milton and Halton, and about MTH in particular. Our June speaker is Angela Chavez from the Halton Multicultural Council. HMC is a community-based settlement agency that provides a variety of programs and services to immigrant and refugee communities. Its staff and volunteers are dedicated to enabling every individual, regardless of race or ethnic origin, to participate as full and active members of the community through fostering mutual respect and understanding of one another. Angela's presentation will be about the work of HMC, which includes providing transitional housing. Following this presentation there will be an update on the latest news from MTH, introduction of Carolyn Dyck, Administrative Manager, as well as a gathering time to get to know each other If you are interested in hearing more about what we are doing, or getting more deeply involved as a volunteer, please join us on Monday, June 10 - Boston Presbyterian Church (9185 Third Line, Halton Hills).

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Rental Housing Market in Halton - CMHC report

Only about 10% of rental units in the Halton Region are in Milton & Halton Halls according to the March 2013 Community Lens published by Community Development Halton. They presents housing market information collected by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The bulletin #85 also reveals that the Halton Region has the highest average rental rates and lowest average vacancy rate in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA). Most notably it is 50% higher than City of Hamilton. See the Community Development Halton website for more information

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Two new welcomes

The month of May 2013 marks a welcome to two new inidividuals to Milton Transitional Housing. Most important we welcome a third client who is now safely in the second townhouse in Milton. This is great work by the team and identifies that MTH is really making a difference to those for whom it was set up to help. Secondly, we welcome Carolyn Dyck who starts as the contract Adminstrative Manager and will be instrumental in driving MTH forward. Good luck to you both.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Youth Homelessness in Canada - new book

The Homeless Hub has announced the publication of a new book on Youth Homelessness in Canada Implications for Policy and Practice aims to fill a gap in the information available on this important issue by providing an easily accessible collection of the best Canadian research and policy analysis in the field. It is available to download as an free Ebook (PDF or for ereader devices) or alternatively a print copy can be purchased for $22. It is published by the Canadian Homelessness Research Network. This book is protected under a Creative Commons license that allows you to share, copy, distribute, and transmit the work for non-commercial purposes, provided you attribute it to the original source.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Metroland Poverty Series latest media

Metroland published its latest in its four part series on poverty. The latest article is called Working to alleviate poverty in Halton. This article identifies the various agencies in Halton involved in supporting those at risk of poverty, including Milton Transitional Housing. This is an important series. Please encourage friends and family to read it and we congratulate Metroland and the media team for working on this poverty series.

20,000 page views and growing

I am truly honoured that there have been 20,000 page views of this blog, particularly given that this subject is very specific to our Milton community. It is not exactly 'viral' in web terms but it does show the growing awareness and interest for those at risk of homelessness in our community and our compulsion to act. This is all amazing given that the blog just started as a vehicle for me to share that I found it hard to comprehend homelessness in a community as apparently affluent as Milton. I look forward to celebrating 50,000 views one day.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Supporting 2 families or individuals in Milton - 3 very soon

We are making traction in Milton towards our goal of 7 individuals or families in Milton by 2016. We now have a second client in the program and in the coming weeks a third. Congratulations team for all your dedication, team work, passion and resilience. Milton Transitional Housing is making a difference to those at risk of homelessness in our community.

Applications for Administrative Support

I am proud to share that Milton Transitional Housing received around 70 applications for the part time role of Administrative Support. What this tells us may be two fold, either that the cost of living and unemployment is driving more people to apply for positions or that we have ignited a passion within the community of Milton to see what we have not seen and to join forces and take action. I hope it is the latter.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Garth Brown talk

On a previous post I highlighted that Garth Brown, landlord and affordable housing advocate was coming to Southside church in Milton. Twenty five residents of Milton came to listen to his experience at the Milton Transitional Housing event, including some new faces. His enlightening presentation highlighted some current Metroland: Living in Poverty series and the estimated 5,490 households in Milton who are classified as low income. Garth draw attention to the fact that individuals are turned away from the Lighthouse in Oakville or Halton Womens Place because of lack of limited capacity. He complimented MTH on the three housing units that they have secured and their five year vision. Garth was able to share some innovative affordable housing solutions with the audience, highlighting that there are both formal and informal alternative options available to us to support those at risk of homelessness. These include having those on low income rent converted basements. It appears this may be affected by a proposed change to zoning by-laws by the Town of Milton. We will investigate further to understand the implication of this. Thank you Garth for sharing your time and passion with us.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Habitat for Humanity in Halton

With the current Metroland Poverty series it was especially poignant to listen to Mavis O'Neil give an inspiring talk at Faith United this morning as an ambassador for Habitat for Humanity in Halton. While I have known of Habitat for Humanity for many years I gained a new deeper insight this morning, in particular how it has positively impacted the local Halton region. Well done Mavis. Here is some info from the Habitat for Humanity Halton website
Habitat Halton was founded in 1999 by a group of individuals from Port Nelson United Church. Our first chairman was Peter Fisher, a long time resident of Burlington. Initially, we served only Burlington, however in July 2002; we became Habitat for Humanity Halton. We were granted charitable status in March 2000. To date, we have built and sold seventeen homes to hard-working, local families with mortgages structured so they can afford them. Five homes are in Burlington, three condos in Burlington, two are in Acton, four are in Georgetown, two homes in Oakville, and one in Milton. In the spring of 2011, the HomeWORKS program was launched. HomeWORKS is a series of free financial sessions. These session/workshops help people build on the skills needed to handle everyday $$$ challenges. This program offers tools to build and manage a budget along with money saving tips.
I understand that they aim to build another 24-28 homes in Halton in the coming years. I asked Mavis how Habitat for Humanity integrates with the goals of Milton Transitional Housing and Halton Poverty Roundtable. She strongly believes that each group has a slightly different and complementary objectives and that the collaboration and work of the multiple groups can only contribute to the increasing awareness of the challenge for those at risk of homelessness and poverty in Halton. Similar to MTH it began with a small group of passionate individuals who recognised that they needed to take action.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Poverty series 2 - Poverty not always about making bad decisions

In the second of the Metroland Poverty series, Oakville Beaver reporter, David Lea presents a real life story about how someone has slipped into poverty. The interviews also highlight the challenging of navigating the system to get assistance. Part Three in te Metroland's four series of Living in Poverty reports has been identified that it will be: Uncovering the Hidden Poor discusses the obstacles faced by those living in poverty. We encourage you to discuss this with friends, co-workers and relatives to see whether they ave read it and their perception of these issues in Halton. Only in this way can we stimulate change.

Halton Overty Rountable quote

A person living in poverty is not somebody different. It’s not someone who deserves to live in poverty. It’s just somebody the same as you or I who had a series of problems and didn’t have the supports we have and that’s how they end up in poverty.
Marc Hamel, Halton Poverty Roundtable, taken from Milton Canadian Champion Poverty series 1st article

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Living in Poverty - A Special Report

In last week's Milton Canadian Champion is an article about the impacts of poverty in our affluent community. It is the first of a series of four special reports in to Living in Poverty in Halton. It discusses the findings of the Halton Poverty Roundtable and Halton Region report. Discovering the Hidden Poor in Halton is a four-part Metroland series examining the complex issue of poverty in the affluent region’s communities. The series examines those who find themselves struggling to survive and who face deprivation, exclusion and isolation as a result. The series looks at poverty’s multiple dimensions, those who deal with it on a daily basis, contributing factors and barriers, possible solutions and resources that can offer assistance. I commend the Champion for this important special series. The 2nd in the Living in Poverty series will be: When Poverty Hits Home will share the stories of those who are living in poverty in Halton. It is great to see the increase in the commentary and evidence being discussed in recent years.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Administation Manager Position Available

Milton Transitional Housing is accepting applications for a new part-time contract position of "Administration Manager". Please check out the details on the Milton Transitional Housing website and pass this information along to anyone you know who might be interested in applying. Applicational deadline is April 15. This is an important role in further helping the organisation move forward towards achieving its goal of seven units by 2016.

Garth Brown speaking in Milton on Monday April 15th

Garth Brown, landlord and affordable housing advocate will be speaking about his projects in Kitchener, Oakville and Burlington at Southide Community Church on Monday April 15th at 7pm. This regular bi-monthly gathering is a time to learn the latest progress from Milton Transitional Housing concerning the housing crisis in Milton and Halton, as well as get to know each other. If you are interested in hearing more about what we are doing, or getting more deeply involved as a volunteer, please join us on Monday, April 15 at 7pm at Southside Community Church, 7480 Derry Road (south side between the Sports Centre and the hospital).

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Twitter account change - follow @MiltonTH1

The original twitter profile @HSHMilton is going offline very soon and we recommend you now follow @MiltonTH1 on twitter where you will find the same interesting content on those at risk of homelessness in our community and wider a field. At the start of the original project we had been granted use of the Home Suite Hope name as we were being mentored by Home Suite Hope Shared Living Corp in Oakville. Milton Transitional Housing Corp. is now as standalone project, with its own website, Facebook page and twitter profile. You can connect to each of them here. This blog will also continue. It has received almost 20,000 page views and daily visitors. This blog details our story since 2008. Our quest to establish 7 units to help those at risk of homelessness in our Milton community is on track and remains our vision.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Toronto City Council increase homeless shelters

Torontoist contributor Desmond Cole reports about the Toronto City Council Vote to Increase Homeless Shelter Capacity, as councillors want to see shelter occupancy kept at or below 90 per cent. Torontoist article The piece describes the pressure for homeless shelters in Toronto and interviews Joe Mihevc, Councillor Jaye Robinson, Ontario Coalition Against Poverty organizer John Clarke and Liisa Schofield also from OCAP.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

The 3rd Annual Empty Bowls in March raised over $7,000.

Milton Transitional Housing are very thankful for the $7,000 at the 3rd Annual Empty Bowls. Over 135 diners were welcomed at MinMaxx Hall, Milton Centre for the Arts, on March 17th for a gourmet soup lunch donated by local restaurants, caterers and bakeries. A HUGE thank you to all of our volunteers, sponsors and to everyone who attended the event! More pictures from the event can be viewed on the MTH Facebook page. Thank you to the sponsors and restaurants: Platinum and Event Sponsor MinMaxx Realty Silver Sponsor U-Need Storage Bronze Sponsors The David & Chaia Ayre Goodworks Foundation Simply Creative Pottery Studio The Storage Spot Soup Allison's Catering Main Street Italian Eatery Swiss Chalet Amore Mia Bistro Japan Buffet Lisboa Bakery Osso Bucco Ristorante Bistro On Main Casey's Grill Bar Kelsey's Restaurant Lynda's Catering Bread Boston Pizza La Rose Italian Bakery Pottery Simply Creative Pottery Studio Tree Top Pottery c+r pottery Other Gay Lea Foods Family Matters in Milton Grants Ontario Trillium Foundation Halton Region The Meeting House Community Partners Community Living North Halton Friends Boston Pizza Milton Faith United Milton Milton Area Christian Churches Working Together St. Paul’s United Church Boston Presbyterian Church Ladies Fellowship Group Grace Anglican Church Community Outreach Sleep Country Milton

Monday, March 18, 2013

Bon Appetit & felicitations

Congratulations to all the Milton Transitional Housing team for a spectacular 3rd annual Empty Bowls event yesterday. The bowls get better and better every year and the soups were to die for! Thank you to all the sponsors, volunteers and the many many resident's of Milton who came out to the Milton Centre for the Arts to support those at risk of homlessness in our community. There were some very happy and contented faces leaving with their beautiful hand crafted bowls. There are many pictures of the event on the Milton Transitional Housing Facebook page News will follow shortly as to the amount raised from this great fundraising event. Look out for coverage in the local press.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Empty Bowls 2013 video message

Here is a video message on why I believe the Empty Bowls 2013 at Milton Centre for the Arts on Sunday March 17th is important. Many start up organisations profit or not-for-profit never make it to Year 3. The team now has secured three units towards its goal of 7 by 2016 and this 3rd annual Empty Bowls shows the sustainability of the organisation, passion of its directors and staff and bright future suporting those at risk of homelessness in our Milton community.

Canadian Champion - Fill your tummy

The Milton Canadian Champion continue to support the work and awareness of Milton Transitional Housing with coverage about this Sunday's third annual Empty Bowls event. The previous two events have been a tremendous success in both raising awareness among the local community as well as funds to support the work with those at risk of homelessness. Here is the link to the Inside Halton website. We very much hope to see the resident's of Milton out in force filling their tunmmies with wonderful gourmet soup and leaving with a beautiful bowl. Your picture may appear in the paper, this blog or the website after the event.

Empty Bowls tomorrow - tickets still available

There are still tickets left for the Empty Bowls Soup Lunch this Sunday. Click here to purchase your tickets now Don't miss out on the opportunity to acquire a snazzy hand crafted bowl as wel as helping those at risk of homelessness in our community. The bowl will even be filled with as many fabulous soups as you are wishing to sample. Buy a ticket and get to the Milton Centre for the Arts tomorrow Sunday, March 17th.

Monday, March 11, 2013

6 days to delicious soups

If you can't wait just 6 days until the MTH Empty Bowls event, here is a wonderful soup recipe from Chef Kristen Allin - Curry Pumpkin and Apple Soup. I remember this from a previous year being exceptionally good. Here is a link to four recipes on the Milton Transitional Housing website. Thank you to Kriten Allin for sharing these with us. The Empty Bowls event is on Sunday March 17th.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Herts Young Homeless

My wife Sarah and I stubbled across Herts Yound Homeless. They help young people secure and maintain appropriate accommodation by providing information, support and help in a crisis. hyh works with other agencies throughout Hertfordshire towards improving local provision and preventing youth homelessness. They state that every year they help 2500 young people get their lives back on track. Sarah recommended it to the Harpenden Ladies Circle, who accepted it as one of their nominated charities. I have not met them yet but I look forward to doing so and understanding what we can also learn from their approach and experience. They are several parallels. In their literature they write "Every day young people are homeless in our community and our mission is to support them in a secure situtaion and ensure that they do not return to the desperation of sn uncertain future". The Herts Yound Homeless website can be found here They offer: Advice & Information Mediation Floating Support Crashpad Herts Health Action for the Homeless Home Truths education

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Chef Kristen Allin's fennel celeriac soup

Come to Empty Bowls on March 17 - for more information visit Get in the mood and try out this great recipe for Fennel Celeriac Soup by Chef Kristen Allin!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Wine Tasting tomorrow for MTH

What could possibly be better? Being challenged to taste wine for only a $5 donation at Case Americo. The sponsored event will raise money for your local Milton community for those at risk of homelessness. Casa Americo is at 144 Main Street, Milton. Be sure to be there on February 20 at 7:30pm.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Milton Canadian Champion article - February 13th

Milton Transitional Housing is again in the Milton Canadian Champion, whose support we really appreciate. The article starts "Two struggling families will have a little more stability thanks to Milton Transitional Housing (MTH). The not-for-profit group, which provides accommodations, support and counseling for people who are in a housing crisis until they can secure long-term affordable housing, recently secured two townhouses." Click this link to the full Inside Halton - Milton Canadian Champion article "Transitional Housing group finds home for two families". There is a great quote from both Ruth Parkinson and Wendy Schau about the success and progression of the transitional hosuing project. The article also highlights the forthcoming events which further help build awareness and raise funds for helping those at risk of homelessness in Milton Casa Americo on Main Street will host a wine-tasting benefit for MTH on Wednesday, Feb. 20 at 7:30 p.m. A $5 cover charge includes wine tasting and hors d’oeuvres. MTH will hold its annual Empty Bowls Soup Lunch on Sunday, Mar. 17 from 11:30 to 2:30 p.m. in the MinMaxx Hall at the Milton Centre for the Arts. Tickets cost $50 and include a taste-as-many-as-you-like gourmet soup lunch prepared by Milton restaurants and caterers. For more information visit

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Bill C400 seeks to revive National Housing Strategy

Bill C-400, An Act to ensure secure, adequate, accessible and affordable housing for Canadians, was introduced in the House of Commons as a private member’s bill last February. It deals with a National Housing Strategy which is greatly needed. After the 1st round of debate in October, it is set to be debated again and voted on at second reading on February 27. The Liberal & NDP members will vote for it and it is possible that the Conservatives will allow a free vote of their members. If it passes second reading, it will be referred to committee. I thought that if we can give this some publicity, it might be helpful. There's more info at Marie-Claude Morin, MP for Saint-Hyacinthe – Bagot, introduced Bill C-400 to revive the goal of establishing a National Housing Strategy. “To this day, Canada is the only G8 country without a national housing strategy. Yet, the development of affordable housing remains key to countering poverty and homelessness by improving the quality of life of Canadian households. The bill requires the minister responsible for the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) to work with provincial ministers responsible for housing, municipal representatives, First Nations communities, housing providers in the non-profit and private sectors as well as with representatives of civil society organizations to establish a national housing strategy.” People are encouraged to contact your MPs to support the bill. Halton's latest State of Housing Report, dated 2011 has just came out. I will review and post a summary.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

New housing units allow Milton Transitional Housing to offer bridge accommodation and support to two more struggling Milton families

Milton Transitional Housing (MTH) has just opened two new housing units in Milton. These new housing opportunities will provide bridge accommodation, support and counseling to two more families in our community experiencing a housing crisis as they work towards securing stable housing. “With the need in Milton so great, our volunteer team has worked very hard to increase MTH’s ability to help,” says MTH Board Chair Ruth Parkinson, adding that: “We believe that people struggling with housing security is not good for our town and addressing this issue contributes to the health of Milton.” Transitional housing has been identified by Halton Region’s Comprehensive Housing Strategy as a big part of the solution to the problem of housing crisis (outright homelessless, or the risk of homelessness). It is designed to be a bridge from the short-term emergency shelter system (often as little as 30 days in duration) to long-term affordable housing. With MTH, this “transitional” period can extend from four to 24 months depending upon circumstances. We offer housing at subsidized rental rates, along with requiring our participants to set goals and undertake counseling and training to help achieve their goal of housing independence. This supported housing model has proven to be very successful in Oakville, Burlington and Halton Hills – all communities offering transitional housing. Until MTH was established, Miltonians did not have access to transitional housing in our own community. The Milton Transitional Housing program became a reality in July 2011 with a volunteer board and start-up funding support from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, and agency of the Government of Ontario. MTH’s first participant was accepted into the program in February 2012, and with these two new units we have increased our capacity to help more people who are in housing crisis. MTH’s goal is to provide seven supported transitional housing units within five years.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Beautiful New Empty Bowls

Join us for the 3rd Annual Empty Bowls Soup Lunch on Sunday, March 17 from 11:30 until 2:30 at MinMaxx Hall, at the Milton Centre for the Arts (1010 Main street). Tickets are $50 per person and include a taste-as-many-as-you-like gourmet soups and breads from Milton's best local restaurants, caterers and bakeries along with a charitable receipt for $25 donation to Milton Transitional Housing. You will get your hands on a beautiful new hand-painted ceramic soup bowl. MiniMaxx Realty is host sponsor for this MTH event for a second year. Please stay tuned for more information about this event. Visit the MTH facebook page or website for more information or to donate and buy tickets. Our very first Empty Bowls event in 2011 signified the launch of our transitional housing project in Milton. It is an important fundraiser and opportunity for us to raise awareness of this homeless risk among those in our outwardly affluent Milton community.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Casa Americo Wine Tasting

Come support Milton Transitional Housing at the Casa Americo Wine Tasting on Wednesday, February 20 at 7:00 pm. Cover charge is $5 and includes wine tasting and hors d'ouevres. Casa Americo is on Main Street. This is exciting to see as it was Casa Americo who actually did our very first fundraising event back in 2011, even before our first Empty Bowls and just before the formal launch of our new organisation. Thank you for your continued support. Please support and enjoy the wine tasting!

3M Warm Hands, Warm Heart Campaign

This past December the 3M Milton Sales Team held their annual Christmas luncheon with over 80 participants. This year as part of the celebration the team created the 3M Warm Hands, Warm Heart campaign, asking everyone to donate a hat or mittens to MTH. These gifts were shared with MTH and our community partners. Thank you 3M Milton Sales Team for your wonderful donation!

Monday, January 21, 2013

New housing units acquired

Moving towards MTH's goal of aiding seven individuals or families by 2016-17, two new housing units have been acquired. Along with support and counselling these new homes will help make a difference in the lives of those in Milton suffering from a housing crisis. This is an important step to move beyond the first unit following the original funding support and to evolve the model as planned. Congratulations to the team, and thank you to all volunteers and supporters for making a difference in our Milton community. We will make a difference.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Summary Report - The Working Poor in the Toronto Region

In 2012, the Metcalf Foundation published a Summary Report - The Working Poor in the Toronto Region. Who are they, where they live and how they are changing. The authors are John Stapleton, Brian Murphy and Yue Xing. The full report is available to download from the A quote by David Hulchanski, Professor Factor-Inwentash Faculty for Social Work, and Associate Director, Cities Centre, University of Toronto summarizes the report "The working poor in the Toronto Region pour our coffee, serve us in stores, and work in our offices and factories. Their story is important. They are growing in numbers. It is a problem that is simultaneously political, social, locational, and economic." The authors use the term to refer to people with non-trivial earnings who live in a household with a low income. Their definition has five specific criteria; - has an after-tax income below the median Low Income Measure (LIM), - has earnings of at least $3,000 a year, - is between the ages of 18 and 64, - is not a student, and - lives independently. The report showed that the working poor had increased by 42% between the 2000 and 2005 census in the Toronto Region, compared to a 24% in Ontario as a whole and 15% across Canada. This to me is dramatic in itself that in our municipalities like Toronto, Province and Country the number of working poor is increasing at double digit rates. As the population ages this is unsustainable. The summary report identifies seven key features of the working poor in the Toronto Region: 1. They most commonly work in sales and service occupations 2. They work a comparable number of hours and weeks to the rest of the working-age population 3. They are more likely to be living without an adult partner than the rest of the working-age population 4. Working-age immigrants to Canada are over-represented among the working poor. 5. They are only slightly less educated on average tan the rest of the working-age population. 6. Fewer own their own homes. 7. They tend to be youger as a group than the working-age population as a whole. So what does this have to do with Milton. Well, it indicates the problem is trending in a negative direction. It suggests that the number of people at risk of homelessness is likely to increase. It helps us understand that those at risk of homelessness are not by default the unemployed, unmotivated or other stereotypes. It says they can be hard working members of society who can no longer support themselves. As the report also states "Although work can provide a ladder out of poverty, this is not always the case." The authors hope the summary report will stimulate further research and understanding.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

New challenges, opportunities and aspirations

New Year, new challenges, new opportunities, new aspirations In 2012 Milton Transitional Housing did something amazing and began providing housing and support to our first client. So what of 2013? The goal is to lease two additional units in Milton to then provide shelter and support for two more individuals or families at risk of homelessness in our Milton community. This goal will present some new challenges as MTH grows. The team will require more members, volunteers and sponsors. A key fundraising event will be the 3rd annual Empty Bowls, which will be held on Sunday, March 17th 2013. More details will be posted shortly. We welcome your ideas and comments.