Reverend Ken MacLaren, Executive Director, Ottawa Innercity Ministries (OIM), introduced us to Moira Davis, who spoke of her work as an outreach worker with the young people using her 3 key points of focus – Support, Community, and Meaning. Instilling a sense of worth is important for these youth and to have someone to support them.
We also heard from Kristina Beaton a former street person, who shared her difficult childhood with us which involved abuse, fear, alcohol and drug use her family, and a lot of social workers. She met up with an outreach worker from the Ottawa Innercity Ministries(OIM) and was treated with respect, forgiveness, and friendship and got the support she needed. She volunteered with them and started in their WorkSkills program. They encouraged her and the other youth artists and the youth sold $14,400 worth of their art in 6 months. Eventually Kristina went to Algonquin for the animation program and just graduated. Her art was a means to escape the horrors of homelessness and to find happiness. She found her dad after 25 years and is happy have a family.
Congratulations to Michel Podeszfinski who received his 100% attendance tab for 22 years perfect attendance!
President Stephen was pleased to present the Rose to two members, Suzanne Johnston and Ron Petersen, for their work on the Homelessness Committee and for coordinating our clubs involvement with the recent Push For Change presentations by Joe Roberts who is walking across Canada pushing a shopping cart to raise awareness about youth homelessness.