Community Involvement Legacy Homes, in partnership with the Brockville and District Association for Community Involvement and Durham Association for Family Respite Services received funding from the MCSS Developmental Services Housing Task Force for a two year project titled "Housing is a Community Issue".
The purpose of the project is to foster innovation by advancing the principle that housing is a community issue and to challenge the assumption that people with disabilities are looked after by services (MCSS) rather than families and communities. To accomplish the purpose, the project coordinator will bring together families interested in exploring housing for their sons and daughters. Another strategy is to bring together interested stakeholders such as builders, planners, contractors, service providers, and others interested in increasing the amount of affordable, accessible housing in Leeds and Grenville.
Principles that Guide Our Actions……and what they mean for Housing
- Life happens best in typical ways in ordinary community - one person at a time, based on interests that citizens have in common with one another, starting and ending one's day from home with natural breaks and rests happening in ordinary places.
- Supports and plans are best arranged around individualized options - arrangements uniquely designed to bring out the best in your son or daughter and what they have to offer.
- It is important to always begin with the person and their interests – who they are, who they might be, their deep qualities, their skills and gifts - and then to listen deeply, again and again as they reveal more and shift and grow over time.
- Relationship is key, and ways to focus on the developing the kinds of situations where relationship will arise will be interwoven into all discussion. A wide range of relationships, including those that are life-enhancing and safe-guarding can only be developed within real community - not separate and apart, or grouped with others with disabilities.
- Our goal is to get beyond mere presence - just being there - and to look at authentic participation and real inclusion. These things are only possible when we help people to hold and build upon valued roles which include contribution, take place in community and involve other citizens.
- Shared decision-making is an essential part of the listening and learning process -the voice of the individual is important and shared decisions will be made among the important people in their life.
- Simple everyday choices are a made and supported within the everyday limitations and responsibilities that we all experience. At the same time, we will talk about how people can be truly involved in being a part of governing the direction of their lives.
In terms of housing, these ideas mean that we are looking to imagine, plan and move into home situations which are:
- Designed for and with one person at a time, realizing that no two people will have the same ideas, interests or preferences in home, housing or support;
- Focused on each person so that they feel they are in a "home of my own" where they are in charge in typical and important ways;
- Anchored in diverse neighbourhoods where they are not grouped with others with disabilities and seen as "one of them", but rather where they live in homes with and among others so that they are seen as "one of the neighbours";
- Places of security and identity from which to take on roles where they contribute to their community and enter into new relationships with others in ordinary and typical ways and in ordinary places in their community.
Information and Resources
Ontario to green light ‘inclusionary zoning’
Queen's Park is poised to give municipalities the power to require developers to include affordable housing in new buildings.