Theo Lamb

Theo Lamb

Service groups come together to discuss issues

Coming Together, a day-long symposium on the issues of homelessness, mental health and addiction, took place in Mission on Wednesday.

Coming Together, a day-long symposium on the issues of homelessness, mental health and addiction, took place in Mission on Wednesday.

After a full morning of seminars and presentations, representatives from four Fraser Valley service groups – Scott Guitard of the Mission Youth (MY) House, Paul Keller from Hope’s Thunderbird Motel Project, Teesha Sharma from Blue Door in Maple Ridge, and Sharon Forbes of Raven’s Moon in Abbotsford – answered queries from more than 85 service workers and politicians who came from across the Lower Mainland.

According to Michael Boronowski, Mission’s manager of civic engagement and corporate initiatives, staff worked to “find service providers who were having success because of something novel.”

He said by bringing these people together, ideas could be shared on new models of partnerships and new ways of working together to discuss homelessness and addiction issues.

“The point of this is to bring the people tackling this issue, whether it’s the municipalities or the service providers on the ground, and talk about the partnerships that are working.”

He said some municipalities are “ahead of the game” in some areas, while work needs to be done in others.

‘There are models out there that we can build on to work in our community.”