The Journey Home Task Force is inviting the public to provide input and perspectives on homelessness as the long-term Journey Home plan is developed.
There are a number of ways the public can get involved:
– Taking an online survey regarding homelessness in Kelowna
– Attending one of the upcoming Journey Home Design Labs open for public participation
“Development of the Journey Home plan is designed to be community-driven and inclusive, as such, we want to hear from all citizens who may have an interest, idea or opinion on homelessness in our community,” said Martin Bell, Journey Home Task Force co-chair. “The survey results will be an important tool for the Journey Home team to get a solid understanding of the general feel from the public on the issue, while the design labs will allow for a deeper look at some of the complex issues surrounding homelessness and strategizing the best ways to approach them at a local level.”
Online Survey (open February 7 – March 5):
The online survey is open to all citizens and will remain open until March 5 to give the Task Force enough time for analysis before finalizing the Journey Home plan for June 2018.
Journey Home Design Labs (February 19 – March 9):
The following design labs are open for public participation. An additional nine design labs will be held with individuals or groups with specific areas of expertise. More information about each session, along with registration information can be found atkelowna.ca/journeyhome:
· Feb 19: Ending Homelessness & Reconciliation
· Feb 19: Early Identification & Prevention Strategies
· Feb 20: Integrating Intimate Partner Violence Responses in the Plan
· Feb 21: Linking Poverty Reduction & Homelessness Initiatives
· Feb 22: Housing First & Supportive Housing for Chronic & Episodic Homelessness
· Feb 23: Coordinated Access & Assessment
· Feb 23: Red Zone Review
· Mar 6: Developing Mental Health & Addictions Supports for People Experiencing Homelessness
· Mar 7: Research Agenda to Support the Plan
· Mar 7: Public Education & Understanding
· Mar 8: Affordable (rent-geared-to-income) Housing Development
· Mar 8: Minority Populations
· Mar 9: Technology-Based Solutions
· Mar 9: Engaging the Faith Community
Topics for the design labs were determined using key takeaways and learnings from two community summits on homelessness held in Kelowna in January. Over 100 representatives working in the homeless-serving sector, as well as members of the business community, government agencies, and those with lived experience attended the summits including one hosted by A Way Home – Kelowna focusing on youth homelessness and prevention.
In addition to the summits, survey and design labs, a Lived Experience Circle has been established to inform and guide the work of the Journey Home Task Force. Those who are currently experiencing homelessness, or have experienced homelessness in their lifetime, are welcome to join the circle. More information about the Lived Experience Circle including the next meeting date is available atkelowna.ca/journeyhome.
Following the consultation process, a draft of the Journey Home plan is set to be presented to Kelowna City Council in June 2018.
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