Is it time for a new evolution of wise storytelling? We think it is. Stories that challenge the way we think about mental illness. Stories that give a human perspective on the facts. Facts like:
- In any given year, 1 in 5 Canadians experiences a mental health problem or illness.
- Up to 70% of young adults living with mental health problems report that symptoms started in childhood.
- Percentage of people who are depressed who respond well to treatment – 80%
- Percentage of people who are depressed who never seek treatment – 90%
Screenshot from the amazing PSA - coming soon!!
In the coming weeks NEWS and RainCity Housing will be launching a website that will share stories, start conversations and connect people that have lived in isolation. Come back to this site for the link or look for it on our Facebook page or Twitter feed.
We ALL need your voice to fight stigma. The only way we can make real change is to do it together.
Tomorrow is the last day of an exhibit that shows just some of these stories. March 1, 11am to 6pm at Vivo, 1965 Main Street.
We are very happy to announce that the first tenants will be moving into our housing program at 395 Kingsway this Monday, Feb 24. Staff will begin working around the clock on Sunday, Feb 23, and if you need to get a hold of them please call the front desk:
A page devoted to information on this housing program will be available at this website very soon, so we can start blogging about all of the RainCity programs, initiatives, and stories, and not just this one. Stay tuned!
Photo credit - Kevin Hill, Vancouver Courier
We’ve been really happy with all the media coverage this past week about our Biltmore program. The Province, Globe & Mail, Vancity Buzz, and the Courier all took time to visit us in order to share their stories with you. The Province also did a video interview of Acting Associate Director Amelia Ridgway and our Operations Manager, George Simpson, and they did a great job explaining how the building will operate, and how we plan to move forward.
We’ve had our first Biltmore Community Advisory Committee already, and the second one is next week. If you’d like to receive the minutes from those meetings, please email me and I’ll add you to the list.
Once the landline is confirmed, it will be here on our website along with all of our email contacts, so you can easily get a hold of us with questions, concerns, or ideas.
We still don’t have a confirmed move in date for tenants, but we hope it will be before the end of February. The City of Vancouver has posted a summary of the feedback and input community members provided the two open houses in January, and you can read that here.
Mount Pleasant is a great community, full of people who really care about everyone living there, and we are looking forward to being a part of that and caring right back!
Please join us at one of this week’s Open Houses for the Biltmore Hotel. At these sessions we hope to get valuable input from people on how we can make this housing program an important part of Mount Pleasant and find ways to work together on how it intersects with the community.
The two Open Houses are:
- Wednesday, Jan 8th, 6pm to 8pm – St Patrick’s High School Cafeteria, 140 E. 11th Ave
- Saturday, Jan 11th, 10am to noon – Native Education College, 285 E. 5th Ave
After a brief introduction of the program and the partners, attendees will be able to break off into groups to discuss ways of finding the best possible outcomes for everyone, both the folks living in the building, and the surrounding community.
Also, on Thursday, January 9th at 6:30pm, the Residents Association of Mount Pleasant, or RAMP, is having a Community Forum for more discussion. It will be held at St Patrick’s Church, 2881 Main Street.
You can find additional information at the City of Vancouver’s website.
Hope to see many of you there! Vancouver has long prided itself on the diversity of its communities, and a great example of this is when people from various backgrounds co-exist together.
The Nurse assesses, identifies, plans, implements and evaluates the nursing care required to assist ACT team clients in meeting their physical, social, spiritual and psychological needs. The Nurse works within the team’s interdisciplinary clinical framework to provide client centered and strengths based care in accordance with the CRNBC/CRPNBC Standards of Practice and consistent with the mission, vision and values and established policy and protocols of RainCity Housing and the ACT Team. The Nurse provides treatment services that are both inclusionary and flexible for individuals with mental illness, addictions and/or chronic medical conditions and ensures integration and continuity across the care continuum. The Nurse establishes and maintains relationships with, and consults with, service and housing providers, clients, their families and colleagues to provide appropriate treatment services based on best practices and client need. The Nurse performs duties such as, intake, mental and physical health and addictions assessment, treatment planning, crisis intervention, consultation,
and individual counseling.
Nursing and support services are often provided in non-traditional environments, such as the participant’s home, coffee shops, and community centres. As ACT follows the Housing First model, supporting participants through evictions and moves is also a core component of the work, ensuring that learnings and skills from each housing are not lost.
Diversity: RainCity Housing serves a diverse group of people and we need a staff group that reflects the diversity. People of diverse backgrounds and cultures are encouraged to apply.
Qualifications: Minimum education and experience includes:
Baccalaureate in Psychiatric Nursing
Current practicing registration with the College of Registered Psychiatric Nurses of British Columbia (CRPNBC).
Three (3) years’ recent related experience providing treatment services to individuals with mental health, addiction and chronic medical concerns,
Or an equivalent combination of education, training and experience.
Valid class 5 BC drivers license and acceptable drivers abstract. Requires use of a personal vehicle
Direct enquiries and resumes: contact ACT Team leader Jodie Foster email@example.com or the ACT Team at 604-675-2390
ACT is a transdisciplinary mental health team that has a client-staff ratio of 10:1, with 80% of the work occurring in the community. The Team includes a nurse practitioner, nurses, social workers, a counsellor, an Occupational Therapist, and Community support workers. Crisis support is available seven days a week, 24 hours a day. Program staff are closely involved in hospital admissions and discharges. The RainCity ACT team also provides housing opportunities for clients using a ‘housing first’ scattered site approach. Clients are offered immediate access to rent supplements so they have the opportunity to live in the same kinds of permanent independent apartments that are typically available to people without mental illness. Self-determination, choice and harm reduction are at the centre of all considerations with respect to the provision of housing and support services.
Last Sunday, in partnership with the City of Vancouver, we kicked off Homelessness Action Week with the premiere of locally-produced film shorts featuring firsthand accounts of participants of the RainCity ACT Team, their families and ACT Staff as the participants moved indoors, often for the first time in decades. It was at Café Deux Soleils on Commercial Drive and we had a full house. Check out the trailer and the Prezi!
‘Choice: The First Step Indoors’, which follows Vancouver’s Housing First Assertive Community Treatment Team, was produced by local filmmaker Gwen Haworth. After it screened, she moderated a panel made up of Vancouver Housing First Speaker’s Bureau members, who shared their personal lived experience of moving indoors. Our ACT staff were also on hand to answer questions and gave a short presentation. It was amazing!
In collaboration with the Community Action Initiative and our community partners, RainCity Housing and Support Society has launched a project called NEWS – New Evolution of Wise Storytelling.
The goal of NEWS is to create opportunities for community members and media creators to come together to create inclusive and supportive stories about mental health, as a way to end the stigma associated with mental illness.
To kick off Mental Health Week, on May 7th and 8th, 2013, NEWS is hosting a Learning Exchange. We invite you to participate in this exciting and interactive event!
Listen. Learn. Share: A Learning Exchange
To kick off mental health week, NEWS is hosting a 2-day learning exchange that will bring together community members, media creators, and allies to create dialogue about how mental illness is portrayed in the media and how we can work together towards more socially inclusive ways of sharing stories. There will be interactive panel discussions, breakout sessions, and an art room. This is a free event.
Dates: Tuesday, May 7th and Wednesday, May 8th, 2013
Time: 9:30am – 4:00pm, both days
Location: Chapel Arts Hall- 304 Dunlevy Ave., Vancouver, B.C.
The event will take place on the main floor which is wheelchair accessible. Any sessions that are offered upstairs (non-accessible) will also be offered on the main floor.
There will be delicious food catered by Salmon n’Bannock Bistro and a musical performance by Cris Derksen and edzieOo.
If you are a media person or service provider, please RSVP to Quinn up to a maximum of two persons per organization.
Community members do not need to RSVP, just drop by whenever you want!
Quinn Bennett, NEWS Project Consultant
Transgender and gender non-conforming people are much more likely to be experiencing poverty or homeless than the average person, almost twice as many as the general population. Discrimination or harassment from service providers, or rejection from their families and gender segregated shelters can all lead to ending up on the street.
This can also impact other basics people might take for granted, like accessing proper health care or an education. The best way to ensure the safety, proper health, and emotional wellbeing of young LGTBQ2S+ people is by providing housing that respects young people’s identity and life choices. But it’s more than housing and employment. It’s an anti-suicide measure for our young people. It’s about building a community of care for our young people.
What’s the project?
The two year pilot project will provide housing with supports and employment to LGBTQ2S+ youth between 18 and 25 in a residential setting and will utilize a LGBTQ2S+ advisory group to develop best practices with youth. We will connect youth with older members of the LGBTQ2S+ community, the goal being to provide safe, lifelong ‘chosen family’ or mentorship with mutual benefit for all parties.
The project will be evaluated externally by the McCready Centre Society, who have extensive experience with youth homelessness, specifically LGBTQ2S+ homeless youth. This project will be the first in Canada and we want to make sure it’s not the last!
Why is RainCity interested?
RainCity Housing and Support Society has been a leading housing provider since 1982, offering housing, support and outreach to a diverse group of people. While providing these services to specific demographics, such as housing for women and folks with multiple diagnoses, we honour the unique challenges they face due to systemic oppression. We focus on people’s strengths, believe strongly in community involvement, and learn from our experiences, pursuing an anti-oppressive framework that respects the communities we have the pleasure of working with everyday. Our hiring ethic has aided us in developing a unique competency in servicing the LGBTQ2S+ community, increased our knowledge of LGBTQ2S+ barriers, history and queer theory, and led to increased representation within our staff group.
How can I help?
We already have a commitment of half the funds needed thanks to a very generous grant from The Vancouver Foundation. We are seeking matching funds in order to make this project a reality and we’re asking people like you for your help. Your financial support will ensure that LGBTQ2S+ youth can live in a safe, supported environment – the first in Vancouver, the first in Canada!
To donate, contact Fran Romer:
To find out more about the project, contact Aaron Munro:
IDAHO, all caps, isn’t a state. It’s a day, the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, and it’s today! Events are happening in over 50 countries around the globe.
Here in Vancouver, Canada’s QMUNITY and Vancity marked this year’s celebrations with the 8th Annual International Day Against Homophobia Breakfast on May 17 at the Fairmont Hotel in Vancouver and the theme was “Queering the Workplace: How LGTB Inclusion is Good for Business”.
And this evening, Vancouver’s Rainbow Refugee Committee is having a benefit tonight where they will be showing 3 short films on queer refugees followed by a Q & A with filmmaker and NGO journalist Paula Stromberg. The event starts at 7pm, suggested donation at the door is $10, or donate what you can. It’s at the Rhizome Cafe, 317 East Broadway near Main.
But how does IDAHO relate to homelessness? Yesterday the Tyee wrote about a Queer and Trans Poverty Study, a research project that’s being done by the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition. Studies have been done in other major centres in North America, showing that the queer and trans community is over represented in homeless populations. We definitely experienced that at some of our temporary shelters over the past three years, but this study could go a long way to back this up and lead to more solutions. Check it out!
How are you celebrating the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia?
Join us at the FIRST EVER Downtown Eastside Women’s Rock Camp!
Your all time favourite Girls Rock Camp Vancouver has partnered with our first ever DTES Women’s Rock Camp. And we are REALLY excited!
But we need your help. Volunteers are needed for some or all of the days of the camp. And the deadline is coming up fast!
- What: DTES Women’s Rock Camp
- When: June 4th to 6th, 12pm to 6pm, and June 7th, 1pm to 8pm
- Where: Chapel Arts, 304 Dunley, Vancouver
Visit www.surveymonkey.com/dteswomensrockcamp, fill out the application and we’ll be contacting you with more training details.
We need 10 to 12 volunteers with musical experience, and 10 to 12 volunteers to help with everything that happens behind the scenes. You’ll be joining RainCity support staff and a core group of Girls Rock Camp organizers to make this the most amazing rock camp ever! Transgendered, Gender Variant and Gender Queer folks are more than welcome!
- Inspirational and information rich training by long time social advocate Vikki Reynolds, PHD, RCC and Hayley Sinclair, Peer Programs Coordinator, Vancouver Coastal Health.
- Probably the MOST FUN EVER and an opportunity to work AND learn from some of the toughest and most rad campers you can ever hope to meet!
If you have any questions about volunteering or the camp itself, you can contact Aaron, Tara, or Danielle.
Thanks for volunteering!