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Ontario Municipal Social Ser vices Association

Annual Learning Symposium & 61st Annual General Meeting June 5-8, 2011 London Convention Centre, London, Ontario

Hosted in partnership with the City of London

1 Dundas Street West, Suite 2500, Toronto ON, M5G 1Z3 • 416.642.1659 •

Event Partners


OMSSA is pleased to have the following sponsors for this event and would like to acknowledge our valuable partnerships with:

Presenting Partner

Social Housing Services Corporation Social Housing Services Corporation will also exhibit

Host Partners City of London

City of London will also exhibit

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation will also exhibit

Halton Region Regional Municipality of Peel Regional Municipaility of Peel will also exhibit

Networking Partner Ontario 211

Ontario 211 will also exhibit

Workshop Partner

FJ Galloway Associates County of Simcoe Regional Municipality of York


Welcome to OMSSA’s Annual Learning Symposium and 61st Annual General Meeting, co-hosted this year with the city of London. As is the case every year, we are pleased to work together with one of our valued members on this event. The theme for this year’s OMSSA Learning Symposium is Municipal Innovations in Poverty Reduction. This year’s theme has been specifically chosen to highlight how service managers from across Ontario are playing a key role in reducing poverty and improving the lives of the most vulnerable in our communities. Together we will share best practices and learn how Consolidated Municipal Service Managers and District Social Service Administration Boards have engaged their residents in creating safe and healthy communities, developed partnerships with both the private and public sectors, built on Ontario’s Poverty Reduction Strategy, and much more. This year’s symposium sessions will examine opportunities for effective collaboration between individuals, communities, and governments in service delivery and will demonstrate the importance of social investment and community development. We are delighted with the diversity of presenters joining us throughout the conference who will share their thoughts on, and best practices for, reducing poverty in Ontario. Our workshop hosts are also set to offer engaging discussions on all elements of human services. We know that you will gain insightful information that can help you as you help others in your communities. Whether you are an administrator, manager, or front-line staff member of a Consolidated Municipal Service Manager (CMSM) or District Social Services Administration Board (DSSAB); a provincial government staff member; a representative of a provincial association or community agency; an elected official; or a member of the general public, your participation in this year’s symposium will not only nourish the spirit, but will also help to enable us to continue to work together to support our families and communities. Sincerely,

David Rennie OMSSA President

Event Partners

Dear OMSSA colleagues & friends,


300 Dufferin Avenue P.O. Box 5035 London ON N6A 4L9

Office of the Mayor

June 5, 2011 Dear Friends: As Mayor and on behalf of Londoners, it is my pleasure to welcome you to London and to the Ontario Municipal Social Services Association 2011 Learning Symposium – Municipal Innovations in Poverty Reduction. As municipalities work together to reduce the number of persons who live in poverty in our province we must remain steadfast in our commitment. This goal can be achieved. The 2011 Learning Symposium has brought together service managers, private and public sector organizations, community leaders, elected officials, and community partners to showcase municipal innovations in poverty reduction. By sharing best practices, learning about new programs that engage residents and create safe and healthy communities, investigating partnership opportunities with the public sector, honing service delivery skills to assist clients, and building on Ontario’s Poverty Reduction Strategy you will continue to play a key role in improving the lives of the most vulnerable in our communities. I am especially proud that there will be several sessions led by my staff and by our important community partners. I would like to congratulate the organizers who have worked hard to make certain this event is a success. If your schedule allows I would encourage you to do some exploring in the heart of our city and beyond. June provides wonderful weather for enjoying the parks and pathways by the Fork of the Thames or you might investigate the exhibits at Museum London or any number of private galleries. Specialty shops and boutiques are mixed in with an abundance of options for fine dining and the menus are as varied as our diverse community. I trust you will find your time in London is both productive and enjoyable and we’d love to see you again. Sincerely,

Honourable Joe Fontana Mayor The Corporation of the City of London Office: 519. 661.4920 Fax: 519. 661.5308






Dear OMSSA members and symposium attendees: I am pleased to send my best wishes and greetings for the Ontario Municipal Social Services Association Learning Symposium and 61st Annual General Meeting. As Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, I know firsthand how important your members’ role is in strengthening our communities. Our government counts on the network of dedicated service managers and community leaders to be the front line in delivering critical human services responsive to the needs of the individuals and families we serve. Delivering affordable housing to the most vulnerable Ontarians is a key component in reducing poverty. With more than $2.5 billion invested in affordable housing in recent years, together we have built and repaired over 270,000 homes for seniors, people with disabilities, and families on low income. Going forward, our Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy will set a strong foundation for a more efficient, accessible system for those who need it. This, along with our new legislation, the Strong Communities through Affordable Housing Act, 2001 will be important tools to deliver integrated housing and homelessness services for years to come. The ongoing support and commitment of many people attending this symposium is crucial to our collective success. I look forward to our continued partnership with OMSSA and wish you an exciting and successful event. Sincerely, Hon. Rick Bartolucci, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing



OMSSA is proud to celebrate the progress made in investing in people through our annual Awards and Recognition Program. As a part of our commitment to plan, manage and deliver quality human services in Ontario, the OMSSA awards celebrate individuals and OMSSA members who have made outstanding contributions to both OMSSA and their communities.

Lifetime Achievement The Lifetime Achievement award recognizes the long-standing contribution of exceptional OMSSA members who have recently retired or who plan on retiring in the year in which the award is given.

Mary Lucas

Mary Lucas’ career in social services spans 35 years and exemplifies dedication to the communities and residents of the District of Thunder Bay. As General Manager, her responsibilities included Ontario Works, Children’s Services, and Social Housing. She also successfully managed the challenges presented by the transfer of child care and social housing responsibilities. In 2008 she oversaw another transfer of mandated social services from four municipalities into a single organizational structure. Since January 2009, Mary then served as Chief Administrative Officer, reporting to the TBDSSAB Board of Directors. Throughout her career, Mary has provided her knowledge and expertise fostering the growth of the TBDSSAB from a fledgling Board to an organization that provides dedicated service to the citizens of the District of Thunder Bay. She is known for her commitment to client services in Northern Ontario and to addressing urban aboriginal social issues.

Bill White

Bill White is a progressive thinker who is committed to continuous improvement. As the Chief Administrative Officer for the Nipissing Social Services Board, he built an effective organization that provides vital services to thousands of residents each year. Bill’s notable accomplishments in his 20-year career included steering the transfer of the Land Ambulance Services and Social Housing to the District of Nipissing from the province, developing the DNSSAB role in Affordable Housing to better address housing and homelessness needs, and participating in the evolution of client-centered services based on partnership and collaboration. Bill oversaw the implementation of a new model of service delivery and physical office changes at City Hall North Bay to better serve DNSSAB clients and to support staff in their essential community-focused work. Bill brought his vast knowledge to the OMSSA table serving as a member of the Board.

Connie Woloschuk

Through her 30-year career, Connie Woloschuk has provided outstanding leadership and dedication to the creation of services in support of the homeless and those at risk of homelessness. Connie’s dedication to addressing poverty and homelessness lead her to her important work at the Salvation Army, first as an Employment Counselor and Program Director from 1989 to 1994, and then as the Executive Director of the Salvation Army Booth Centre. In 2001, she shared her passion with the City of Ottawa as the Manager of Residential and Support Services where she worked until 2009. In addition to serving as a Board member and Chair of the OMSSA Policy and Advocacy Committee, Connie co-chaired the Ottawa Alliance to End Homelessness, and was President of the Ontario Association of Hostels from 1997 to 2000.


Valerie Sauer

Johanne Talon

Johanne Talon’s career exemplifies outstanding front-line experience as well as management expertise. She has provided superior leadership and the direction necessary to support the evolution of social services programs and services within the City of Ottawa. The programs and services created under Johanne’s guidance have been instrumental in developing clients’ skills and in helping them to secure employment. As chair and co-chair for the Ottawa Social Services Staffing Committee for over a decade, she advocated on behalf of diverse groups and developed a system of integrated services and supports to meet the changing needs of clients. She also has expanded and customized training initiatives to respond to changes in the local labour market. Overall, Johanne’s contribution can be measured in the greater sense of self worth, pride, comfort and stability that clients have gained as a result of financial independence and the ability to provide for their families.

Susan Norden

Throughout her career Susan Norden has demonstrated a creative and supportive commitment to children and families, and particularly for children with special needs. She continues to raise the bar in getting the best for families of the County of Brant, as demonstrated by her innovative work as Director of Child Care Services for the City of Brantford. In addition to her humour, passion, and vision, Susan is a known motivator for her employees. She sets an example for the true meaning of human services through her numerous collaborations with community agencies. Susan has served as a leader in the early learning and child care sector playing a significant role in children’s development, in community building, and in affecting progressive social change. Sue’s contributions to OMSSA include her membership to the Children’s Services Vision Task Force.


Valerie Sauer’s passion for human services and attention to the finer details of service delivery make her an extremely creative and innovative thinker. Valerie’s accomplishments through her 40-year career include the creation of the Wellington County Community Services Cost Recovery Unit and the creation of the Training & Development Unit. In 2006 Valerie focused her attention on her leadership team and initiated a Community Services wide “leadership work and learn” education program in partnership with Seneca College. In 2007 Valerie singlehandedly embarked on a mission to identify and support people suffering from addictions in Wellington County and created the Wellington Guelph Drug Strategy Committee as a team of community leaders who champion addiction issues in Wellington County and the City of Guelph. In 2008 Valerie spearheaded a partnership with Citizenship and Immigration Canada to address Settlement Services in the County of Wellington, which led to Ontario’s first MunicipalFederal agreement for Settlement Services. Valerie served as a member of OMSSA’s Policy and Advocacy Committee (PAC).



Local Municipal Champions Local Municipal Champion award recognizes the great work done by teams from amongst CMSM and DSSAB staff across the province. Teams may include partners from community organizations and/or initiatives working together with a CMSM or DSSAB.

Hamilton Best Start Network The Best Start Network promotes the well being of families and children from prenatal to 12 years by ensuring they are supported to reach their full potential. With over 55 active members representing all sectors related to early years programs and services, the Network has become the go-to planning table for early years services in Hamilton. The Hamilton Best Start Network is a Starting Point partner of the Hamilton Roundtable for Poverty Reduction, which has identified early learning as a key objective and has partnered with the Network to achieve the outcomes that are vital to reducing poverty’s impact on child development. Some recent accomplishments include: • creating Check it Out Clinics to provide early identification services to more than 550 children resulting in follow-up referrals for 225 children • engaging over 350 primary care providers in the promotion of connecting families to community resources • developing Service Provider Networks to ensure integration at the neighbourhood level • creating seven new Ontario Early Years Centres including Aboriginal and Francophone specific programs • decreasing waiting time for speech and language services by 81 percent • creating a Parent Charter and Framework. The Best Start Network has brought together many different sectors in Hamilton and exemplifies successful collaboration. It has truly changed the way Hamilton approaches the critically important work of early learning and child care.

Region of Waterloo’s Child Care Special Needs Resourcing Partnership (CCSNRP) The CCSNRP is an example of a strong, effective, long-term partnership, and is an integral member of the Region of Waterloo Parent and Children’s Services Committee (formerly Best Start Network). Through ongoing consultation and formal training, the CCSNRP provides leadership in early identification, inclusion, early intervention, quality initiatives, and professional development for Early Childhood Educators (ECEs) and other professionals. Success in 2010 included • 1,039 children receiving Resource Consultation Services • 409 children getting speech-language, occupational, or physiotherapy consultations • 41 children receiving kinesiology services • 94 Preschool Pals volunteering at early learning and care programs • 144 children participating in social skills groups. As a part of their continued commitment to professional development, over 560 ECEs participated in the Early Learning and Care conference and almost 2,500 ECEs participated in 143 workshops last year. Consisting of program managers from seven agencies funded to provide special needs resourcing services to licensed early learning and child care program, the CCSNRP has been cited as an example of true service integration in Waterloo Region and at planning tables across the province.

City of Hamilton’s Human Services Planning Initiative (HSPI) Team The City of Hamilton’s Community Services Department’s Human Services Planning Initiative has gained the reputation of being a valuable community source for identifying trends, engaging in innovative research, and providing valuable knowledge and local information. The HSPI team has consistently and significantly raised awareness on the need to plan for a community’s social or human infrastructure. In 2009, the HSPI team took steps to broadening member representation and making planning a stronger community-driven process. Through this engagement process, over 70 participants contributed to the development of planning principles and shared ideas about how the city’s vision could be used to guide the development of Hamilton’s Human Services Plan. This work culminated in The Playbook, which is now used by many planning tables throughout Hamilton in their human services planning efforts. Most recently, the City of Hamilton initiated the Human Services Infrastructure Study (HSIS) to identify future human services infrastructure requirements by assessing service standards, service gaps, duplications, and barriers to service implementation across the City of Hamilton and in the community. The HSIS will inform Hamilton’s Human Services Plan, scheduled for completion in 2012.


Initiated in response to community need, the Waterloo Region Energy Assistance Program plans and delivers a variety of human services that support individuals and families. By filling in gaps in energy assistance, WREAP works to prevent housing instability and homelessness that results from the inability to pay energy costs. Recent programs include Winter Warmth and Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LEAP), where utility partners contribute a portion of their annual revenue to low-income energy assistance. (Even prior to the introduction of LEAP, local utility partners saw the benefit of WREAP and voluntarily contributed funds to the program each year.). WREAP additionally works to communicate policy changes and provides recommendations through their annual report and bi-monthly reporting. WREAP continues to be progressive in its planning and program design, integrating many partners and expanding and evolving to ensure it effectively serves those who need help. As proof of its work, almost $900,000 has been distributed in energy assistance to 2000 households since 2002.

Algoma DSAB: The Ontario Works and Coordinated Client and Program Services Unit The Ontario Works and Coordinated Client and Program Services Unit’s are the Algoma District Services Administration Board’s front-line staff engaged in the day-to-day delivery of Ontario Works, Housing Services, and Children’s Services. Through the development of a SAIL (Supportive Approaches through Innovative Learning) team with front-line and management staff alike, this learning has given new life to ADSAB and the communities it serves. Since its inception, front line staff has been engaged in the implementation and normalization of the SAIL competencies in on-going work and have continually supported the normalization of this curriculum with provincial, municipal, and First Nation’s partners across the province. The Algoma DSAB TEAM has provided SAIL training across the organization, including to CAO, IT, HR, Finance, Housing Services, Children’s Services, and Ontario Works staff. The staff of the ADSAB exemplify human services integration efforts, commitment to innovation, and the continued commitment to working with colleagues from across the north in progressive policy and program design.

OMSSA’S 2011 LTAHS Advisory Group The work completed by the OMSSA LTAHS Advisory Group to address significant changes needed to Bill 140 prior to its third reading represents a significant collaboration across the municipal sector. Without the dedication of this group to developing OMSSA’s position on Long Term Affordable Housing, Bill 140 would have been much less palatable to service managers and would have presented administrative challenges to all CMSMs and DSSABs. Led by Kerry Hobbs, Manager of Housing Administration for the Regional Municipality of York and consisting of over 40 participants from 30 CMSMs and DSSABs, the LTAHS Advisory Group produced three papers: a clause-by-clause review of Bill 140 with proposed amendments and regulation considerations, a preliminary sample analysis of the impact of the proposed rent-geared to income (RGI) changes on tenants and service managers, and recommendations for a more balanced accountability framework between service managers and housing providers. The group worked closely with OMSSA and Association of Municipalities of Ontario to ensure that all service manager interests were fully represented during the Bill 140 consultations. In short, the LTAHS Advisory Group represented an excellent example of OMSSA members coming together to develop comprehensive, evidence-based analyses of a key policy issue confronting all CMSMs and DSSABs.


Waterloo Region Energy Assistance Program (WREAP)



Champion of Human Services The Champion of Human Services is awarded to an individual who has made a significant impact on human services at the municipal, provincial and/or federal level. They are considered thought leaders whose work is motivational to OMSSA members.

Sherri Torjman - Vice-President, Caledon Institute of Social Policy

As Vice-President of the Caledon Institute of Social Policy, Ms. Torjman has written in the areas of welfare reform, customized training, disability income and supports, the social dimension of sustainable development, and community-based poverty reduction. In her book Shared Space: The Communities Agenda, Ms. Torjman argues that despite the diverse range of community efforts and initiatives underway, we are all working towards increasing resilience in various ways. Furthermore, by “joining up” with others who are engaged in similar work, we open the door to innovation and increased efficacy; while working in this “shared space” is not always easy, it enables all of us to raise the bar and embrace a common agenda. In 2004 Ms. Torjman served as co-Chair of the Technical Advisory Committee on Tax Measures for Persons with Disabilities and reported to the Minister of Finance and the Minister of National Revenue. She has worked for the House of Commons Committee on the Disabled and the Handicapped, the House of Commons Special Committee on Child Care, and the Royal Commission on New Reproductive Technologies, and is a former Board Member of the Ontario Trillium Foundation.


Social Housing Services Corporation is proud to be the Presenting Partner for the OMSSA 2011 Learning Symposium & Annual General Meeting

Visit our booth and try YourSay You could win an iPod shuffle


Program at a Glance

Sunday, June 5 6:00 p.m.

Monday, June 6

Welcome Reception (Salon B)

8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Registration and Information (Ballroom Foyer)

8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Voices From the Street film (Theatre)

8:00 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.

Breakfast (Ballroom 5/6)

9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

Opening Plenary Session: Short-term Thinking is Killing Prospects of Reducing Poverty (Ballroom 5/6) Speaker: Don Drummond, retired Chief Economist, TD Bank Financial Group

10:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Refreshment break and exhibits (Ballroom 4 and Ballroom Foyer)

11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Concurrent Workshops 1.1 Lessons Learned from a Successful Community Development Partnership between Local Government, Education, Mental Health, and Child Care Sectors (Salon A) 1.2 Tales from the Road: Conquering our Capital Repair Deficit One Town at a Time (Salon C)

1.3 Measuring Poverty: Asking the Right Questions (Salon B)

1.4 Approaching Integrated Service Delivery through Housing: WoodGreen Homeward Bound Program (Salon D) 1.5 Voices from the Margins: Working Together to Change Our Communities (Salon E) 12:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Lunch OMSSA’s 61st Annual General Meeting (Ballroom 5/6)

2:15 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.

Concurrent Workshops 2.1 Next Steps in Ontario’s Long Term Affordable Housing Strategy (Salon A)

2.2 Reducing Poverty by Developing your Local Workforce (Salon B)

2.3 “Government Makes a Difference”: OMSSA and AMO Working Together on Next Steps Towards Reducing Poverty in Ontario (Salon C)

2.4 Homelessness in Northern Ontario: Lessons for the Rest of the Province (Salon D)

2.5 Youth Futures: Breaking the Cycle of Poverty through Education (Salon E)

4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

Sponsor and Exhibitor Wine and Cheese (Ballroom 4 and Ballroom Foyer) featuring One Minute to Win It!

6:15 p.m.

Trip to Palasad South (Main Entrance London Convention Centre)


Tuesday, June 7

Registration and Information (Ballroom Foyer)

8:00 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.

Networking Breakfasts Children’s Services (Salon A) Homelessness (Salon C) Ontario Works (Salon E)

Emergency Social Services (Salon B) Housing (Salon D)

9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Opening Plenary: People’s Blueprint (Theatre) Speakers: Richard Matern, Acting Director of Research and Communications, Daily Bread Pat Capponi, Lead Facilitator, Voices from the Street Sima Dini, Stacey Bowen, Paul Fitzgerald, Danielle Svec, Michelle Nelson 10:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Refreshment break and Exhibits (Ballroom 4 and Ballroom Foyer)

11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Concurrent Workshops 3.1 Transforming Communities: Neighbourhood and Children’s Services Approach to Comprehensive Community Change (Salon A) (Continues this afternoon) 3.2 Place-Based Strategies to Address Income Inequalities: Tips and Tools from Toronto (Salon B) 3.3 Combating Youth Poverty: London’s Youth Opportunities Unlimited (Salon C) 3.4 Talking about Human Services so People Will Listen: Tips and Tools for Service Managers (Salon D) 3.5 Housing Research: The Impact of the Special Priority Program on Victims of Domestic Violence (Salon E) 12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. Lunch - Secret Exhibitor Draw (Ballroom 5/6) Speaker: The Honourable Madeleine Meilleur, Minister of Community & Social Services 12:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Dance Heads for charity 1:45 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. Concurrent Workshops 4.1 Transforming Communities: Neighbourhood and Children’s Services Approach to Comprehensive Community Change (Salon A) (continued from this morning) 4.2 Poverty Plans that Get Results: Lessons From Vibrant Communities Canada (Salon B) 4.3 Housing First: “Addressing” Poverty and Homelessness, Embracing Hope, Offering Help, and Building Bridges (Salon C) 4.4 Challenges of Poverty in Northern and Rural Ontario (Salon D) 4.5 Social Housing Services Corporation at your Service (Salon E) 3:15 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.

Refreshment break and Exhibits (Ballroom 4 and Ballroom Foyer)

5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.

President’s reception (Ballroom Foyer)

6:30 p.m.

Awards gala and dinner (Ballroom 5/6)

Wednesday, June 8 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Registration and Information (Ballroom Foyer)

8:30 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.

Breakfast (Ballroom 5/6)

9:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Concurrent Workshops 5.1 Parenting on a Low Income (Salon A) 5.2 Falling Through the Cracks: Housing Advocacy and Trusteeship Program (Salon B) 5.3 Data Strategies: Tapping into National Resources for Local Results (Salon C) 5.4 Local Immigration Partnerships: Systems Planning to Help People (Salon D) 5.5 Housing Careers as a Pathway out of Poverty (Salon E) 5.6 Ontario 211: A Strong Municipal Partner (Boardroom 4)

11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Closing Plenary: Engaging Community in the Right Conversation (Ballroom 5/6) Speakers: Mark Chamberlain, Chair, Hamilton Poverty Roundtable The Honourable Deb Matthews, Minister, Health and Long-Term Care Boxed lunch provided

Program at a Glance

8:00 a.m. - 3:00 a.m.


Speaker Profiles

Don Drummond

OMSSA is pleased to present Mr. Drummond with his 2010 Champion of Human Services award during this opening session. As a leader in providing valuable analysis on issues pertaining to all levels of government, Don Drummond’s career includes many notable accomplishments. Serving almost 23 years at the federal Ministry of Finance, he held a series of progressively more senior positions in the areas of economic analysis and forecasting, fiscal policy, and tax policy. His posts include Associate Deputy Minister responsible for economic analysis, fiscal policy, tax policy, social policy, and federal-provincial relations. Mr. Drummond recently retired from his most current position leading TD Economics analyzing and forecasting economic performance in Canada and abroad. Don has publicly and repeatedly stated the importance and role of fiscal policy in creating prosperous and healthy communities for all Ontarians.

Pat Capponi

Pat Capponi has lived the life many are still trapped in, she has written numerous works of non-fiction about poverty, mental illness, and policing as well as two mysteries set in a rooming house in Parkdale. Pat has served as a board member of CAMH, is a recipient of the Order of Ontario and the C.M. Hincks award from the Canadian Mental Health Association. Currently, she is lead facilitator with Voices from the Street, a program that offers a twelve week course on leadership to the poor, homeless, those with mental health or addiction issues, and those with physical challenges. Pat co-chairs the Mental Health sub-committee of the Toronto Police Services Board, and has been appointed to the Consent and Capacity Board.

Richard Matern

Richard Matern is the Acting Director of Research at Daily Bread Food Bank. The work he is involved with does pushes forward public policy initiatives around issues of hunger and poverty in Ontario. He is committed to innovative research that ensures people with lived experience are actively involved in research and policy development. In addition to working with the People’s Blueprint, Richard was part of the research team that developed the Ontario Deprivation Index, Canada’s first community-based measure of poverty. Richard and his colleagues at Daily Bread have produced a number of reports on poverty, including the Daily Bread Food Bank’s annual Who’s Hungry: Profile of Hunger in the GTA.

Honourable Madeleine Meilleur, Minister of Community & Social Services

Madeleine Meilleur has been the Minister of Community and Social Services since 2006 and Minister Responsible for Francophone Affairs since 2003. Thanks to her leadership, Ontario passed two new laws in 2008. The first law promotes the social inclusion of persons with developmental disabilities; the second law gives Ontarians access to open adoption records. Madeleine Meilleur plays an active role to ensure that the Ministry offers help to the people who need it most, including: women fleeing violence, people with disabilities, or those who are in financial need. In her previous role as Minister of Culture from 2003 to 2006, Minister Meilleur spearheaded efforts to introduce a new and strengthened Ontario Heritage Act, concluding thirty years of efforts to provide better heritage protection. As Minister Responsible for Francophone Affairs, she has been committed to building stronger French communities through critical investments in education and health services, including the expansion of the Montfort Hospital.

Mark Chamberlain

Mark Chamberlain is the President and one of the founding partners of Trivaris Ltd., a commercialization company focused on transforming ideas from concept to sustainable companies and social enterprises. As an accomplished and proven entrepreneur, Mark brings his business acumen to community economic development in general and social enterprises specifically. Initiatives like Options for Homes, a nonprofit group providing quality, affordable housing in Hamilton and Crazy Daisy, a social enterprise that utilizes floral sales to promote mental wellness and employ individuals living with a mental illness. Mark was recognized with the Hamilton Distinguished Citizen of the Year for 2007 for his work on reducing poverty in Hamilton and was appointed to the National Council of Welfare, an advisory body to the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development on matters of concern to low-income Canadians. He is currently Chair of the Hamilton Roundtable for Poverty Reduction; Chair of the Hamilton Jobs Prosperity Collaborative; Chair of the Innovation Factory and a member of McMaster University Board of Governors.

Honourable Deb Matthews, Minister of Health & Long-Term Care

Deb Matthews was elected to the Ontario Legislature in 2003 and re-elected in 2007. She was appointed Minister of Health and Long-Term Care in October, 2009. Deb previously served as Minister of Children and Youth Services and Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Community and Social Services. Deb’s work on social assistance reform, including her report, Review of Employment Assistance Programs in Ontario Works & Ontario Disability Support Program, has received strong support from a wide range of community leaders. Deb was recognized in the 2007 Ontario Budget speech as having been a driving force behind the new Ontario Child Benefit. Deb received the 2007 Political Award of Merit from The Social Work Doctors’ Colloquium, given to an individual who in their political, professional and social life, practices and exemplifies the values of the social work profession including the fight for social justice.



Market forces alone will not reduce poverty. Indeed the modern competitive, globalized economy is raising the economic premium for education and the discount for not having it. The result is widening income disparities in most developed nations including Canada. Action that could alleviate poverty is too often viewed as a current fiscal pressure. The mindset needs to shift to thinking of poverty alleviation as a longer-term investment.

Over the past two years Social Housing Services Corporation Technical Services staff have travelled to almost every part of the province to help housing providers and municipalities with their Social Housing Renovation and Retrofit Program (SHRRP) projects.

Speaker: Don Drummond, retired Chief Economist, TD Bank Financial Group __________________________________________________

11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Concurrent Workshops

1.2 Tales from the Road: Conquering our Capital Repair Deficit One Town at a Time

This workshop will talk about the different projects they’ve helped with – their scope, scale, the challenges, and successes. Participants will hear about the variety of issues affecting social housing buildings across Ontario, and how they can apply that knowledge to their own situation. Speakers: Bill Bacon, Project Manager, SHSC Technical Services Gerry Lichty, Director, SHSC Technical Services

1.1 Lessons Learned from a Successful Community Development Partnership between Local Government, Education, Mental Health and Child Care Sectors


In this workshop, participants will learn about an innovative school/community/neighbourhood-focused community development initiative. Resulting from the Full-Day Kindergarten site selection process, the initiative’s primary goal was to introduce community preventative measures into the school, so as to reduce the impact of risk factors for mental health challenges and to improve children’s positive social and emotional development. By involving families in the solution, and working with a range of service providers in new and innovative ways, the initiative resulted in an experience that exceeded expectations for parents, children, and service partners.

How can we measure poverty? How do we know we are making a difference in poverty reduction? Canada has traditionally used income measures such as the Lowincome Cut-off (LICO) and the Low-income Measure (LIM) in evaluating its progress. But newer measures attempt to take a more multi-faceted approach. This session looks at two such measures. The first is the Ontario Deprivation Index, a provincial-level measure developed by Daily Bread Food Bank and the Caledon Institute in partnership with the Ontario Government and Statistics Canada, and which is now part of the Ontario Government’s Poverty Reduction Strategy. The second is a local Deprivation Index developed by the Kingston Community Roundtable on Poverty Reduction, designed to create a picture of the household circumstances of a person or family living in poverty in Kingston. By examining both measures, the session will explore the challenges and opportunities in measuring poverty and the efforts to reduce it in Ontario.

The workshop will share this model for community development, with a focus on “how” and “why” this partnership was so successful in community change. Participants will gain practical knowledge on community development, on how to work with schools and school boards, and on the processes, key strategies, and insights that are transferable and scalable for other settings. Speakers: Shelley Fehrman, Principal, Niagara District School Board Tiffany Gartner, Manager, Children’s Services, Region of Niagara Janice Horner, Manager, Children’s Services, Region of Niagara

1.3 Measuring Poverty: Asking the Right Questions Sponsored by the Regional Municipality of York

Speakers: Julia Bryan, Coordinator, Kingston Community Roundtable on Poverty Reduction Michael Mendelson, Senior Scholar, Caledon Institute of Social Policy Moderator: Shelley Lothian, Senior Research Advisor, Halton Region _________________________________________________

Monday, June 6

9:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. Opening Plenary: Short-term Thinking is Killing Prospects of Reducing Poverty

Monday, June 6


1.4 Approaching Integrated Service Delivery through Housing: WoodGreen Homeward Bound Program Communities across Ontario face immense challenges in delivering sustained social supports that can break the cycle of poverty. One proven solution to these challenges is illustrated by WoodGreen’s Homeward Bound. Launched in 2004 by Toronto-based WoodGreen Community Services, Homeward Bound brings together the key supports that single mother-led families need to become self-sufficient. Unique in Canada, Homeward Bound’s holistic, four-year job-readiness program features training and education in a marketable skill, personal development support and safe and affordable housing and child care. In early 2010, the Homeward Bound replication project began with key partners in Peel Region and funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation “Future Fund.” The Region of Peel sees Homeward Bound as a way of building on their own Human Services Integration strategy, while simultaneously increasing local capacity and collaborating with existing Peel services. The project will also develop tools and resources so that other communities can replicate and implement WoodGreen Homeward Bound. Over the next year WoodGreen will work with the partners in Peel to finalize a “Homeward Bound How-to-Kit” and replication model. Come and learn how your community can launch its own WoodGreen’s Homeward Bound program, and hear how the Region of Peel sees the program fitting into their Human Services model. Speakers: Anne Babcock, Vice President, Planning and Operations for WoodGreen Community Services Drew Goursky, Manager, Program Design and Development, Human Services Department, Region of Peel _________________________________________________

1.5 Voices from the Margins: Working Together to Change our Communities For poverty reduction initiatives to have integrity and credibility, it is essential that people with lived experience participate in the process of social change. Enabling the voices of people with experience of poverty to be heard is a powerful step in building poverty-free communities. When those with power and influence hear and listen to the stories of those with lived experience, the impact can be profound and lead to personal and institutional transformation. In Halton Region, the social audit process led provincially by the Interfaith Social Assistance Reform

Coalition had enormous impact on poverty reduction efforts in the community, public education system, a faith community, the CMSM, and on the witnesses who told their stories. In this workshop, you will learn about the social audit process and other techniques for engaging the voices of those with lived experience. As well, presenters will discuss the organizational impact that the social audit has had locally. Speakers: Marc Hamel, Co-Chair Halton Poverty Roundtable, Senior Investment Advisor, Hamel Wealth Management Group Joyce See, Director of Community Health, Community Health Services, Halton Region Colleen Sym, Executive Director, Lawyer, Halton Community Legal Services Gillian Tuck Kutarna, Trustee, Halton District School Board ________________________________________________

12:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. Lunch and OMSSA 61st Annual General Meeting Nominations to the OMSSA Board of Directors is now open. Each year at the association’s Annual General Meeting, onehalf of the members of the OMSSA Board of Directors are elected to a two-year term of office. For the 2011-13 term, there are five (5) vacancies to be filled on the 10-member board. Any voting member of the association can be nominated to stand for the board. Nominations to the board close March 30, 2011. Additional Nominations will be accepted from the floor of the AGM as well. Come to the 2011 AGM and: • Hear from the members running for the Board • Receive reports from OMSSA’s President and SecretaryTreasurer • Get an update on the final phases of OMSSA’s governance restructuring along the principles of human services integration • Participate in interactive roundtable discussions designed to allow members to give final feedback on OMSSA’s new vision, values and mission Note: members are encouraged to engage in this final opportunity to provide feedback by using the poster boards available throughout the conference days. More information will be available at the AGM.


OMSSA Board of Directors Election

(Monday, June 6 and Tuesday, June 7) Elections to the 2011-12 OMSSA Board of Directors will follow the Annual General Meeting. You may cast your ballot on Monday, June 6, 2:00pm – 6:00pm, Tuesday, June 7, 8:00am – 9:00am Tuesday, June 7, 10:30am – 11:00am. The new OMSSA Board of Directors will be announced at the Awards Gala on June 7, 2011.

momentum for workforce development while providing direct support to the people who need it most. This session presents two examples of “best practices” in macro-scale and micro-scale workforce development activities. Both the cross-sectoral community initiative in Peterborough that is engaged in planning and labour force research and development, and the skills development-oriented community kitchens of Muskoka provide innovative examples of how CMSMs and DSSABs can become leaders using local workforce development to address the challenges of poverty.

Voting stations in Ballroom Foyer.

Speakers: Heather Elliott, Community Engagement Coordinator, District of Muskoka


Gord Evans, Chief Executive Officer, Workforce Development Board

2:15 p.m. – 3:45 p.m. Concurrent Workshops

Linda Mitchelson, Head, Social Services Division, City of Peterborough

2.1 Next Steps in Ontario’s Long Term Affordable Housing Strategy During the first half of 2011, the Ontario government proceeded with its Long-term Affordable Housing Strategy, with much focus on new legislation and regulations for housing and homelessness. Looking ahead, however, there are still many pieces of the Strategy to be developed, including the creation of local housing and homelessness plans, the crafting of a Minister’s Policy Statement, and the consolidation of housing and homelessness funding. This session will provide updates from key provincial staff involved in the LTAHS implementation, and will include a conversation between participants and panelists about the key next steps for CMSMs and DSSABs. Speakers: Sue Ritchie, Team Lead Program Consolidation, Housing Division, Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing Melissa Thomson, Director, Housing Policy Branch, Housing Division, Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing _________________________________________________

2.2 Reducing Poverty by Developing your Local Workforce: Macro and Micro Activities

In OMSSA’s employment and income issues policy paper, “Climbing the ladder of self-sufficiency,” we emphasized the importance of the CMSM and DSSAB role in leading local workforce development activities at both the macro (community-wide) scale and the micro (individual, oneon-one) scale. By engaging at both levels simultaneously, municipal human service managers can create community

Darlene Osborne, Gravenhurst Community Kitchen Cherri Rhundress, Gravenhurst Community Kitchen _________________________________________________

2.3 “Government Makes a Difference”: OMSSA and AMO Working Together on Next Steps Towards Reducing Poverty in Ontario In early 2009, OMSSA and AMO published a joint paper on poverty reduction. “Government makes a difference: Working together towards poverty reduction” emphasized the need for CMSM and DSSAB leadership in developing local solutions to poverty, together with provincial policy and funding leadership to support service managers. In the two and a half years since the publication of this paper, much has changed in the human services landscape including the introduction of a new housing strategy, a social assistance review, and full-day early learning. This session uses the OMSSA-AMO paper as a lens through which to assess the changes in Ontario and to look ahead Speakers: Etan Diamond, Manager, Policy and Research, OMSSA Petra Wolfbeiss, Senior Policy Advisor, Association of Municipalities of Ontario Moderator: Mike Schuster, Commissioner, Region of Waterloo

Monday, June 6


Monday, June 6



2.4 Homelessness in Northern Ontario: Lessons for the Rest of the Province

Homelessness in northern Ontario has some fundamental differences than in southern Ontario: a scattered population base, long distances between communities, lack of public transportation, lower incomes, fewer employment opportunities, and a higher cost of living. The Northern Ontario Service Delivery Association (NOSDA) developed an inventory of northern homelessness problems and practices to show leadership and to identify strategies and tools to address this difficult and often overlooked issue in northern Ontario. This session will present an overview of NOSDA’s inventory, followed by a broader discussion about recommendations that can help service managers from across the entire province confront the challenges of homelessness and poverty. Speakers: Doriano Calvano, Program Supervisor, County of Simcoe Chris Stewart, Executive Director, Northern Ontario Service Deliverers Association (NOSDA) Moderator: Jan Richardson, Manager, Homelessness & Hostels, City of London


2.5 Youth Futures: Breaking the Cycle of Poverty through Education Sponsored by the Regional Municipality of York

Participants will learn about an innovative initiative targeted at young people living in poverty who would be the first person in their family to attend post-secondary education. The program is based on the fundamental notion that education and accessibility to post-secondary education can break the cycle of inter-generational poverty. It provides leadership training, six weeks of paid employment, and two weeks of university experience with volunteering professors and student mentors. The program achieves this through a variety of partnerships, in-kind contributions, and existing initiatives. Participants will learn about how and why the program evolved; the components of the program; the success rate and lessons learned; and future initiatives for the program. Speakers: Amanda Kaczmarek, Employment Specialist, Youth Zone Jeunesse Mitchell Kutney, Youth Futures Coordinator Taylor Letourneau, Program Manager, Employment Services, City of Ottawa Julie Wiley, Partnership Coordinator, City of Ottawa

4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. Spotlight wine and cheese with exhibitors and sponsors. Exhibitors and sponsors will take the stage to share their products and program initiatives. Don’t miss your chance to play One Minute To Win It London Style, based on the popular television program Minute to Win It ™. The creative staff from the City of London have created six game stations for you to challenge your skills. Using basic household items you will race against the clock in these challenges: Labatt Cup, Forest City Challenge, Pasta Palooza, Covent Garden Market Stax, Quarters on the Thames, and London Tea Party. Come join the fun, have a bite to eat and compete for great prizes.


9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. opening plenary: The People’s Blueprint

A collaboration between Daily Bread Food Bank and Voices From the Street, the People’s Blueprint research project equipped 18 people who were receiving social assistance in communities across the province with the tools they needed to become community researchers. Each went back to their home communities and conducted over 100 video-taped interviews that demonstrate, in an intensely personal way, the hopes, challenges, and experiences of people living on social assistance in Ontario. This plenary session will feature a moderated discussion with members of the Peoples’ Blueprint, and will provide insight into the peer research process, how participating in this project profoundly affected the members of the Peoples’ Blueprint panel, and the key themes that emerged through their research. Speakers: Richard Matern, Acting Director of Research and Communications, Daily Bread Foodbank Pat Capponi, Lead Facilitator, Voices from the Street Sima Dini, Stacey Bowen, Paul Fitzgerald, Danielle Svec, Michelle Nelson ________________________________________________

11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Concurrent Workshops 3.1 Neighbourhood and Children’s Services Approach to Comprehensive Community Change The Child and Youth Agenda is a concrete 3-year plan of action to improve outcomes for children, youth, and families in the city of London. The Agenda’s priorities and goals for action include: End Poverty, Make Literacy a Way of Life, Lead the Nation in Increasing Healthy Eating and Healthy Physical Activity, and Moving to a Family-Centred Service System London System Reengineering. London’s Strengthening Neighbourhoods Strategy and Implementation Plan is a road map that contains the collective ideas of a resident task force for creating the best city they can imagine. The hard work of over 100 residents resulted in a comprehensive city-wide strengthening neighbourhoods strategy and a five year implementation plan endorsed by City Council. Their document is a vehicle for collective action. In this morning session, the City of London will share with you the transformation occurring in London at both the

systems and neighbourhood level. Hear about community innovation and collaboration that is moving London from words to action. Hear about local strategies that are improving outcomes for children, youth, and families and are strengthening all of London’s neighbourhoods. In addition, join municipalities in a discussion that highlights specific tools they are actively using to employ a community development planning approach as they move forward with comprehensive community change. This session continues this afternoon in session 4.1 when you will have the opportunity to learn more about comprehensive change through participating in one of five conversations. Speakers: Lynne Livingstone, Director, Neighbourhood & Children’s Services, City of London Donna Baxter, Manager of Development, City of London Heather Froome, Administrator, Social Development Programs, Region of Waterloo Paul Johnson, Director, Neighbourhood Development Strategies, City of Hamilton Cheryl Smith, Manager Community Partnership and Funding, City of London Marc Todd, Manager, Social Assistance and Employment Opportunities, Niagara Region Community Services

3.2 Place-Based Strategies to Address Income Inequalities: Tips and Tools from Toronto Historically, Toronto has been home to a larger concentration of low-income people than are other jurisdictions in Ontario. There has been growing concern over those being left behind and the by-products of social exclusion. Over the recent years, the City of Toronto has implemented a place-based strategy to address income inequalities through service planning and integration at the local level and focused investments through city partnerships with other orders of government, funders, community-based organizations, and residents. As a result, innovative solutions to die-hard problems have produced a new way of meeting the needs of Toronto’s poverty-affected neighbourhoods. In this session, the City of Toronto will present an overview of its place-based strategy including its research work on Neighbourhood Well-being Indices (NWI) that provide an analysis of social, economic, and demographic characteristics of its 140 neighbourhoods; the work of the Neighbourhood Action Partnership Tables in the priority

Tuesday, June 7


Tuesday, June 7


neighbourhoods; the structures of collaboration to achieve the focused investments; the integrated case management and programming introduced to address resident needs; and the outcomes accomplished as a result of these activities and investments. Participants in the session will receive a workbook on the indicator matrix for adapting to their own communities and outlines of the programs implemented in Toronto. Participants will learn about the key features required to implement a successful place-based approach and will make direct connections with Toronto city staff tasked with indicator development and program delivery for possible collaborative initiatives across municipal jurisdictions. Speakers: Chris Brillinger, Executive Director, Social Development, Finance and Administration Division, City of Toronto Harvey Low, Manager, Social Research, Social Development, Finance and Administration Division, City of Toronto Sarah Rix, Policy Development Officer, Social Development, Finance and Administration Division, City of Toronto

3.3 Combating Youth Poverty: London’s Youth Opportunities Unlimited Program Combating youth poverty is more than providing shelter. Integrated services are a foundation piece for youth to own their destiny. In 2007, London’s Youth Opportunities Unlimited (YOU) began a three-year renovation project to bring affordable housing, health, nutrition, education, training, and employment for youth all under one roof. YOU provides youth with a touchstone as they work toward achieving independence and encourages self-reliance. Speakers: Steve Cordes, Executive Director, Youth Opportunities Unlimited Chantel Grayston, Youth Worker, Youth Opportunities Unlimited Moderator: Judith Binder, District Manager, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

3.4 Talking about Human Services so People will Listen: Tips and Tools for Service Managers The good news is that the human services sector has been receiving increasing attention from politicians and policy makers, as they recognize the value of the sector to the wider community. Still, many misconceptions remain about

what human services are and why they matter. This session will give participants the practical communications tools to market the importance of the human services sector to a variety of audiences—municipal councils, business leaders, media, and community decision makers. A series of onepagers developed by OMSSA for each of the human services sectors will be shared. Speaker: David Wills, Media Profile

3.5 Housing Research - The Impact of the Special Priority Policy for Victims of Domestic Abuse For many years, the Special Priority Policy (SPP) has given victims of domestic abuse a placement priority on social housing waiting lists. Under the auspices of the SPP Research Task Force, a joint project among OMSSA, SHSC, non-profit and coop housing providers, service managers, and the Centre for Research on Inner City Health, an SPP research was conducted to obtain an empirical understanding of the policy impact. Does the policy help victims of domestic abuse? What is the impact on other housing applicants? What are the lessons learned in terms of waiting list management? This session will present the key findings of the research project and will examine the broad policy implications for helping low-income housing seekers with their affordable housing needs. Speakers: Nadia Jamil, Policy and Research Analyst, Ontario Municipal Social Services Association Gerard Warnaar, Manager Housing Access and Policy, Region of Halton ________________________________________________

12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. Lunch with guest speaker Honourable Madeleine Meilleur, Minister of Community & Social Services Secret Exhibitor Draw


1:45 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. CONCURRENT WORKSHOPS

Speakers: Lynne Livingstone, Director, Neighbourhood & Children’s Services, City of London

4.1 Transforming Communities: Neighbourhood and Children’s Services Approach to Comprehensive (continued from this morning)

Trevor Fowler, Child & Youth Network Project Manager, Ending Poverty Implementation Team, City of London

This session continues this afternoon from the conversations in session 3.1. The opportunity to learn more about comprehensive change through participating in one of the following conversations:

Jennifer Martino, Community Development Coordinator, Middlesex London Health Unit

Community Engagement Approaches: Building on the morning’s panel discussion, learn more about local approaches and tools being used to engage communities in municipalities across Ontario

Karen Oldham, Community Development Manager, City of London

Neighbourhood Demonstration Projects : London will highlight key collaborative Child and Youth Agenda initiatives happening in neighbourhoods across the city. Projects include Basic Needs Beacons, Grade 7 School & Community Wraparound, Matched Savings and Microloans, Healthy Eating Healthy Physical Activity Westminster Neighbourhood Initiative, Huron Heights Neighbourhood Literacy Initiative

Gerda Zonruiter, Community Planning and Research Associate, City of London

Systems Reengineering: London will share with you their bold plan to create a truly family-centred system based on a network of Neighbourhood Child and Family Centre.

Neighbourhood Engagement: London embarked upon an ambitious community development process that was fundamentally about helping residents work to improve the quality of life in their neighbourhood. Three years later, we will share with you our learnings, successes, and challenges. In addition, learn more about the ACE tool and how London is using it to “engage for change.”

Social Awareness and Advocacy: London’s Ending Poverty Working Group will share with you how they are changing the conversation in their community through various initiatives such as “” media campaign, London’s Food Charter, and the Child and Youth Network’s position paper, “Clearing the Path Out of Poverty.”

Ian Gibb, Children’s Services Manager, City of London Jason Hastings, Manager Children’s Services, City of London

John Paul McGonigle, Child & Youth Network Project Manger, Healthy Eating, Healthy Physical Activity, City of London

Jennifer Smith, Child & Youth Network Project Manager, Literacy, City of London

4.2 Poverty Plans that Get Results: Lessons From Vibrant Communities Canada Vibrant Communities Canada is a network of 13 cities with collaborative community roundtables focused on poverty reduction. Evaluating Vibrant Communities 2002-2010 examines the results achieved, lessons learned, and critical success factors. Across Canada, 164 poverty reduction initiatives have been launched, resulting in increased assets for over 170,000 individuals living in poverty. This session is vital to communities with existing or emerging poverty roundtables. Session participants will learn from the experiences of Vibrant Communities about governance and management of collaborative community planning, effective community-engagement processes and the results that can be achieved through community roundtable efforts. In this session, the City of Hamilton and the Regions of Waterloo and Niagara will share their experiences as examples of communities that have engaged in cross-sector planning to reduce poverty. Speakers: Tom Cooper, Director, Hamilton Roundtable for Poverty Reduction Liz Weaver, Director, Vibrant Communities Canada/ Tamarack – An Institute for Community Engagement

Tuesday, June 7


Tuesday, June 7


4.3 “Addressing” Poverty and Homelessness, Embracing Hope, Offering Help, and Building Bridges This session presents the experiences from two communities that have undertaken innovative approaches to eliminating homelessness. In Toronto, the Streets to Homes (S2H) embodies a ‘housing first’ philosophy in which housing should be available without prerequisites such as going through a shelter or a treatment centre. Providing clients with housing improves their quality of life, decreases dependence on emergency services, and provides better access to social services and community non-profit organizations. By partnering with community organizations, S2H builds on their individual strengths, local knowledge, and innovation. Cambridge Shelter Corporation (CSC) believes in a “whole person” approach to serving clients. Over the past 11 years, CSC has identified homelessness, housing, and service models to ensure clients have access to the services they need to achieve personal success. The Bridges provides emergency shelter, transitional housing, and outreach to homeless people and individuals living in poverty. Saginaw House provides an abstinence-based living environment for men who require supports for substance use treatment. Through a partnership among private investors, Cambridge Shelter, and the Region of Waterloo, program outcomes include housing stability, quality of life, social integration, and income. Participants in this session will hear from both communities and will learn how both take their own approach to giving vulnerable people the tools, resources and encouragement they need to stabilize their living environment and move out of poverty. Speakers: Marie Morrison, Manager Social Planning, Region of Waterloo, Social Services Gordon Tanner, Acting Manager, Streets to Homes, Toronto Shelter, Support & Housing Administration Anne Tinker, Executive Director, Cambridge Shelter Corporation Moderator: Judith Binder, Manager, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

4.4 Challenges of Poverty in Rural and Northern Ontario In a province as diverse as Ontario, the face of poverty will differ greatly depending on the geographical setting. Rural, remote, and northern communities are challenged by their relative isolation and inaccessibility, creating the potential for people living in poverty to remain outside local poverty reduction efforts. This session will bring together 3 senior CMSM and DSSAB administrators to discuss the unique challenges of poverty in rural and northern communities, and to explore some of the unique solutions to the problem of rural and remote poverty. Speakers: Anne Comtois-Lalonde, Administrator, Social Services, United Counties of Prescott & Russell David Landers, Chief Administrative Officer, District of Cochrane (CDSSAB) Keith Palmer, Director of Community Services, County of Dufferin Moderator: Douglas Bartholomew-Saunders, Director, Employment, Housing & Social Services, Halton Region

Session 4.5 Social Housing Services Corporation at your Service Under the Social Housing Reform Act, Social Housing Services Corporation (SHSC) was given a mandate to deliver business-oriented solutions to Ontario’s social housing providers and service managers. The New Housing Services Act will expand SHSC’s role to provide additional services that build on the existing model of value-added programs in conservation management, investments, insurance, bulk purchasing, asset management, training, and research. This working session will ask you, SHSC’s clients, what you need from us – training, services, research, toolkits, it is up to you. We want to hear what we can do to help you create healthy, sustainable communities for the future. Speakers: Keir Brownstone, General Manager, Green Light on a Better Environment (GLOBE) John Osmond, Director, Client Services, Social Housing Services Corporation (SHSC)


5:30 p.m. President’s Reception and Awards Gala and Dinner – beach theme Join delegates on Tuesday for an evening of fun, food, and tradition! The President’s reception will begin at 5:30 p.m., and will feature the fun of Dance Heads ™. The hilarity begins when your head is superimposed on the bodies of professional dancers. You can sing-a-Iong or just laugh and bob your head to over 45 songs and 450 combinations of participants so you can participate alone, as a duet, or as a trio. After your performance you will receive a DVD of your performance. Your five dollar donation to participate will go to the Salvation Army Centre of Hope. So put on your best summer wardrobe and have some fun and raise some funds! Awards Gala and dinner will begin at 6:30 p.m. During the evening the new OMSSA Board of Directors will be introduced, and this year’s award recipients will be honoured.


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Tuesday, June 7


Wednesday, June 8


9:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. Concurrent Workshops 5.1 Parenting on a Low Income Child and family poverty is a significant issue across Ontario. Policymakers and the public need a more informed understanding of the challenges of families raising children while living on a low income. How does living on a low income impact a parent’s capacity to promote their children’s growth and development? How do parents cope with living on a low income? What strategies would make a big difference in the daily lives of these families? This workshop will share the findings of a research study that explored the realities of parenting and promoting child growth and development in the context of poverty from the perspectives of parents, public health home visiting staff, and the public. The presenters will also facilitate a discussion about poverty reduction and mitigation strategies being implemented by other municipalities within the current political/economic context. The workshop is aimed at increasing awareness in the following areas: •

• • •

The impact of living on a low income on a parent’s capacity to promote their children’s growth and development How parents cope with living on a low income (coping strategies/helpful programs & services) Strategies that would make a big difference in the daily lives of these families Toronto residents’ views of and support for strategies that would support families living on a low income

Speakers: Rita Paul-Sen Gupta, Research Consultant, Toronto Public Health-Healthy Public Policy Dia Mamatis, Research Consultant, Toronto Public Health Healthy Public Policy

5.2 Falling Through the Cracks: Housing Advocacy and Trusteeship Program In the County of Lambton, the community identified the need to service a segment of the population who were living in poverty and at constant risk of eviction and homelessness. Many of this population had multiple barriers such as mental health issues or disabilities, but did not meet the criteria of service providers such as Ontario Disability Support Porgram or Canadian Mental Health. In response the County’s Housing and Social Planning departments, together with a private-sector partner developed an innovative program called the Housing Advocacy and Trusteeship Program. The two-phased program serves many seniors in the community, as well as those who have previously “fallen through the cracks” but who still require extensive supports. Participants in this session will learn about the program’s origins and implementation, and its tremendous success in keeping people in poverty housed. Speakers: Tracy King, Community Support Worker, County of Lambton Connie Van Sickle, Program Administrator, County of Lambton

5.3 Data Strategies: Tapping into National Resources for Local Results The success of local efforts to reduce poverty and to plan for human services is based, in large part, on the ability to obtain and analyze local data. In Canada, there are emerging national strategies designed to support local evidence-based and data-driven initiatives. The Community Social Data Strategy and Community Data Canada are examples of such networks that support the development of local data to inform local community planning. This session will explore how communities in Ontario are working together to develop extensive data repositories and to address local challenges of poverty. Speakers: Federico Cartin-Arteaga, Supervisor Strategic Planning, Strategic Planning, Policy, and Partnerships, Human Services, Region of Peel Wendy Kowalski, Senior Policy Advisor, Office of the CAO, Halton Region Arfona Zwiers, Manager of Social Policy and Planning, County of Simcoe


Local Immigration Partnerships, known as LIPs, have existed since 2008, and are one of the best practices models for local immigrant settlement and inclusion planning in Ontario. LIP initiatives create the ideal conditions for multi-stakeholder partnerships to develop as municipal, provincial, and federal governments join forces with community organizations and businesses to develop a strategy to integrate newcomers in the economic and social life of Ontario’s communities. Workshop presenters will share their experience of collaboration and partnership development, community consultation, research, and other promising practices that contribute to the success of Local Immigration Partnership projects in Peel Region and London - Middlesex, as well as province-wide. Workshop attendees will learn about establishing and sustaining a multi-stakeholder and multi-sectoral community initiative; practical examples of effective stakeholder engagement, leadership structure, and local planning and evaluation tools; and the Welcoming Communities Initiative as a resource for practices and strategies for conducting evidence-based programming. In short, by attending this workshop, participants will increase their knowledge of how to lead and participate in solution-focusd and action-driven local planning initiatives that are grounded in evidence-based research, informed by key stakeholders, and that build on a shared vision and the existing assets of a community.


5.5 Housing Careers as a Pathway out of Poverty

As CMSMs and DSSABs consider labour market and workforce development strategies, one area not to be overlooked is housing. Whether in the areas of property management, technical services, or environmental efficiency, careers in housing can become pathways out of poverty. This session examines two exciting and innovative programs that offer opportunities for workforce attachment through the housing sector. Speakers: Keir Brownstone, General Manager, Green Light on a Better Environment (GLOBE) Jean McIsaac Wiitala, Executive Director, Métis Nation of Ontario Housing ________________________________________________

5.6 Ontario 211: A Strong Municipal Partner

The Ontario 211 Services Corporation is making significant headway in making 211 a pan province service by the end of 2011. This session will outline this progress while describing how the service helps both clients and service agencies in the effort to reduce poverty and its impacts. This session will also provide concrete examples of how 211 is working effectively with municipalities to deal with emergency situations as they arise. Speakers: Bill Morris, Executive Director, Ontario 211 Services Corporation ________________________________________________

Speakers: Dr. Victoria Esses, Psychology Professor and Co-Chair, Welcoming Communities Initiative, Faculty of Social Science, University of Western Ontario

11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Laureen Rennie, Director, Peel Newcomer Strategy Group

Remarks by the Honourable Deb Matthews Minister, Health and Long-Term Care Without a sustainable foundation, we will have little hope of achieving objectives for reducing poverty and improving human health and well-being. Mark Chamberlain will highlight why poverty is a community-wide challenge. From economics, health, and housing, it is important to recognize the need for everyone to share the responsibility and change the current conversation. Mark will provide nontraditional, thought-provoking ideas for creating solutions by engaging the community in the right conversation, and will highlight why sustainability is the key factor in creating long-term change.

Elisabeth White, Co-Chair London and Middlesex Local Immigration Partnership, City of London

CLOSING PLENARY - Engaging Communities in the Right Conversation

Speaker: Mark Chamberlain, Chair of Hamilton Poverty Roundtable

Wednesday, June 8

5.4 Local Immigration Partnerships: Systems Planning to Help People



Social Housing Services Corporation Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation City of London Ontario Municipal Social Services Association RBB Regional Municipality of Peel Service Canada Supportive Approaches through Innovative Learning (SAIL)


Thank you to the planning committee Event Committee Co-Chair, Ross Fair, City of London Doug Ball, County of Lambton Judith Binder, Canada Mortgage & Housing Corporation (CMHC) Margie Carlson, Social Housing Services Corporation (SHSC) Carol Carnegie, City of London Valerie Colasanti, Municipality of Chatham-Kent Pauline Daling, City of Ottawa Tracey Drenth, City of London Cathy Elliott, Regional Municipality of York Stephen Giustizia, City of London Susan Godin, City of London Janice Hamilton, City of London Jason Hastings, City of London Trevor Johnson, City of London Josie Josten, City of London Cheryl Killip, City of London Janet Menard, Regional Municipality of Peel Linda Mitchelson, City of Peterborough Terry Pickles, City of London Jennifer Posthumus, City of Toronto Bibiane Sommerville, District of Nipissing (DSSAB) Sally Thompson, City of London Elisabeth White, City of London

Thank You

Event Committee Co-Chair, Douglas Bartholomew-Saunders, Halton Region


OMSSA 2011 Program  
OMSSA 2011 Program  

OMSSA 2011 Program