Increasing social inclusion and community engagement
Restoration and Empowerment for Social Transition Centres (REST centres) continues to expand and promote their program Bridge of Hope. Through this program, REST centres match youth at risk of homelessness with people with available housing and rooms to rent. They aim to provide transitional housing and support services to youth experiencing homelessness, often as they age out of the foster system. Their mission is to end homelessness for youth in Peel region, Toronto. The fund provided by the Community Housing Transformation Centre will help support Bridge of Hope and enable training landlords and tenants. Offering the youth specialized training will better position them to live in a stable home while the host family supports their integration and inclusion in a mutually acceptable living environment. The training will help eliminate vulnerability to eviction among racialized and Black youth tenants. The project plans to use a participatory approach to develop a capacity-building program and co-create responsive training modules and resources. It will include youth with lived experience of being homeless who will engage with members. And, in collaboration with the technical staff, a consultant will provide expertise to facilitate the design of the training content. The project will empower the youth with culturally sensitive mentoring, coaching, and facilitation skills to deliver the training activities. Furthermore, the consultant will support the design of educational and learning resources for sustained virtual training. They will be available on the website of REST centres with free access. A monitoring and evaluation process and an overall client satisfaction survey will be put in place to provide feedback on the project progress in capacity building.