Over the next few weeks we'd like to take some time to introduce you to some of our fabulous volunteers here at the shelter and give you a glimpse of what it means to us to have such an amazing group of volunteers. First up is Tanya! "I started volunteering at the Welcome Centre Shelter for Women and Families in March 2015 because I knew that homelessness could happen to anyone at anytime no matter who we are and I chose to volunteer at the Welcome Centre because they are geared towards helping women and families. I feel that women need to help and support other women whenever possible. I respect their idea that all women are welcome into their home without judgement. The Welcome Centre accommodates my availability of evening hours after work and I volunteer as a shelter support volunteer once a week. I have also hosted the Friday Fun Night program since we introduced it in 2016. The intention was to give the women something to look forward to at the end of their stressful week of hard work looking for housing. When I see the smiles on their faces and hear their appreciation, it makes the extra time and effort I spend worth it and brings joy to my heart. I look forward to ending my stressful work week at the Welcome Centre and appreciate the opportunities that I have interacting with the women and lending a listening ear. I also help the staff with laundry, cleaning, housework, donations and whatever else needs to be done. It is more enjoyable when it’s not your own work."
Thank you Tanya for FOUR years of service! If you would like to learn more about our volunteer opportunities please email firstname.lastname@example.org. ... See moreSee less
Debbie BennettWhat an inspiration you are this group of ladies Tanya.
Everyone needs someone to listen to them and great them with a chill night at the end of the week.....something to strive to and acknowledge their determination and hard work!
You go girl!!!!
1) Students calling to make appointments for viewings for clients and being told "oh, we don't rent to people from "agencies like that"": Happened multiple times. 2) A former client calling noting her landlord wants her to move out, so has turned off heat and left music blaring in a locked room, and is refusing to answer her calls in the hopes she will just move out; 3) A client from a domestic violence situation brought here by WPD who has significant mobility issues and we have nothing other than mat on floor to offer her at the moment; oh, and language barrier. 4) Clients and staff assisting a client who appears to have had a seizure in backyard during drop-in. ... See moreSee less
Virginia GrimaldiI've been there and you guys offer an amazing service. You took very good care of me when I needed it, I was pregnant, alone and terrified. Many years later both my son and I are doing well and I don't honestly know that he would be here or with us anyway if not for the support I received from your program.
People need to know that when an individual is in a tough spot in life, more often than not it isn't of their own creation and given a little support they will rise far above.
Thank you for being there
7 days ago · 1
Dante SimonatoTHAT'S SO WRONG I KNOW THESE ATTITUDES IN WINDSOR VERY WELL EVEN WITH FAMILY & FRIENDS: THIS IS VICTUM BLAMING PEOPLE...
1 week ago · 1
Amy ThibodeuKeep up the good work ladies ❤️ despite limited resources and lack of understanding/miseducation you make a big difference in your clients lives. Thank you
1 week ago · 3
Sherrill Ann ZonjicHorrible. People are terrible. You are wonderful and everyone deserves a chance and to be treated well.
1 week ago · 1
Joyce MaverLived are being saved by your work !! It is not a drop in center! This is for people in danger , who need a safe place a refuge for them and their children
1 week ago · 3
Roxanne DenaultThey do good work..but there is not enough safe places for these woman...I called for someone and the place was full.
Magbule DokoDo you accept large clothing donations? If yes do I just drop off at your location?
1 week ago
Diane ChabotNot surprised that the need exceeds the available shelter. This organization needs more support from the public and the municipal government. To those working there, you are valuable and appreciated.
1 week ago
Kris FieldingCity needs your services. Be proud of the work you do.
1 week ago
Karen ScaddanThankful for the assistance you offer to those who are struggling.
Quarter Auction dates for venue are tight, so choosing between FRIDAY MAY 3RD (6-8:30, doors open at 5) or SUNDAY APRIL 28TH (1-3:30, doors open at noon). and....GO! will decide by end of day and finally move forward! ... See moreSee less
Food Bank Donations Needed Busy few weeks in food bank seem to be draining the shelves quicker than expected! March is a great time for an office food drive! Peanut butter, kids snacks, pasta, sauce, tuna, canned veggies- you name it and we NEED it! ... See moreSee less
Happy FAQ Friday all! Question from community: I saw your stats you posted earlier and was wondering if you'd share/explain the numbers around service restriction? What does that mean?
Great question and thanks for asking; we were hoping someone would! Service restrictions suck and we dislike doing them, which is why we are constantly evaluating and trying to change the process in order to limit as many barriers to access as we can. Even so, sometimes people are asked to leave, and would be for one of three reasons (theft, violence, housing search expectations).
Looking specifically at January we noted there were 9; 8 of the 9 were "high acuity" and 1 was "mid acuity", essentially breaking down in simpler terms to the level of need and barriers experienced by the household. That lets us know that as a community we continue to struggle with putting in place the level of supports needed for those households that need the most of our services and time.
For the 9, 1 was due to an assault, 1 noted not looking for housing at all as they were intending to move out of community, and 7 roll up into a general "lack of housing engagement".
Dig deeper a bit more and we see households struggling with mental health/addiction, and the agency and the community not having the level of staff needed on-site or in community in order to provide more intense and immediate supports. Clients who benefit the most from being met with and support DAILY by a housing staff, have housing staff make viewing appointments for them, pick them up and take them to the viewings, help prep them for the viewings, and connect them (if they are willing), with a medley of other community supports in areas of mental health, addiction, counselling, financial supports and in the moment supports during times of escalation and crisis. Some we attempted to work with for over 2+ months in shelter before notifying that we would need to consider discharging as without actively looking for housing or connecting with supports, the shelter itself was functioning as their housing of choice.
These discharges are given notice in writing and verbally by staff, and we continue to try to resolve the concerns and barriers as best we can. Some receive or have received several months income during shelter stays and utilize that for temporary places. We do readmit in future, usually with first meeting noting we need to work on the barriers from last stay still and starting from scratch. Sometimes it is small incremental changes that occur during each stay that can begin to add up to larger changes. Sometimes not.
The community, like so many across Ontario and Canada, continues to struggle with appropriate, well-resourced and time sensitive supports for those with the highest needs. In the meantime they continue to fall into the cracks. ... See moreSee less
In Spring, the Government of Ontario will be announcing the action plan to increase housing supply in the province.
Watch out for: Some recent commentary showing it may include reducing wait time between Board decision and eviction from 11 to 6 days, and allowing private bailiffs (hired via landlords) to remove tenants.
Who cares? We do. If it becomes included, these plans do nothing to improve the system and will lower the amount of time tenants have to appeal their eviction and lower the amount of time they have to try and leverage personal and community supports to find accommodations. Leads to: increased homelessness! ... See moreSee less