Imagine this. You’re working hard full-time, maybe even working multiple jobs. No matter what you do, you just can’t seem to make enough to meet the ridiculously high Toronto rent prices. You’re sleeping in your car, crashing at a friend’s house; whatever it takes to get through the day. But because you’re employed, or not chronically living on the streets, you don’t qualify for any sort of government assistance. You’re on your own. Maybe you don’t need to imagine, you probably know of someone who’s been in a similar situation. You’re probably thinking, “someone should do something about this”.
That’s where Alana Jones, Director of Housing Access and Support Services at Fred Victor comes in. It’s not enough to wait for people to be chronically homeless and put a threshold on what is considered “poor enough”. Alana and Fred Victor as an organization believe in helping people where they’re at and stopping the flow of people into homelessness. After being approached by a donor who wanted to make a direct impact on an underserved population, Alana came up with the idea of a fund for individuals who are working homeless, hidden homeless, or housed but at high-risk of becoming homeless.
With the help of the donor, Alana and Fred Victor were able to set up the “1 Step Up Fund” that offers “First and Last Rent Relief” as well as rent subsidies to those who need the extra help. We’ve all been there at some point in our lives. Thanks to their help, there have been and will continue to be many success stories.