Saturday, November 30, 2013
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".
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.