SOS Vanier in partnership with the Vanier Community Association (VCA) ran a very successful fundraiser April 14th at the Legion. I attended along with over 300 other residents. Proceeds from tickets sales, donations, and the silent auction amounted to over $11,000. Thank you to the VCA and SOS Vanier for organizing and raising this money to help with the appeal to the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) on the Salvation Army’s plan for 333 Montreal Road.
As many of you know, the Salvation Army’s proposed project at 333 Montreal Road is currently awaiting appeal at the OMB. This process can take up to two years and nothing can be built until the appeal process is complete. We need to ensure that we achieve the fundraising goal of $200 000 to put forward the best legal team possible. We have close to $90 000 so far.
During this waiting period we have written to the Territorial Commander of the Salvation Army for Canada, Susan McMillan, and we have requested a meeting with her to discuss alternative approaches, models, locations and meaningful community engagement. Our goal is to better meet the needs of our most vulnerable residents by exploring innovative solutions to the current archaic model. The fact is a traditional main street in the heart of our community is not the right location for a mega-shelter. We are not in favour of relocating the Salvation Army’s issues to Vanier, nor do we think this model has a place anywhere in our City.
In order to help our most vulnerable residents, we need to innovate, decentralize and offer services that are on the cutting edge of research and best practices. If you are homeless what you need is a home. I am confident that together, with the leaders in our community, we can bring forward innovative solutions to better serve our most vulnerable residents.