Media Release: TBDSSAB Celebrates Provincial Award for Community Resource Centres
May 18, 2023 – The District of Thunder Bay Social Services Administration Board (TBDSSAB) has been awarded a Local Municipal Champion Award from the Ontario Municipal Social Services Association (OMSSA).
TBDSSAB received this award in recognition of three community resource centres and five technology hubs established in five neighbourhoods. These were recognized as an example of community collaboration and streamlined integration of services.
TBDSSAB staff involved with the resource centres received the award in person at the OMSSA Exchange Conference held in Ottawa on May 8-10, 2023.
Over the past five years, TBDSSAB has worked to create community resource centres for tenant and clients, creating centralized access for neighbourhood enhancement. The resource centre is a dedicated unit within the neighbourhood that provides a variety of services and supports to the households in the area. On a scheduled basis, staff from the Integrated Social Services team–including Social Assistance, Housing, and Child Care–attend at the resource centres and meet with clients/tenants with the goal of delivering integrated supports to tenants close to home.
Additional services include life skills sessions, community kitchens, community gardens, access to computers, printers and the internet, and provision of space for community partner organizations to offer services. Other services offered through community partners include medical access via a nurse practitioner, local health unit support, healthy kids sites, harm reduction supplies and support referrals for mental health and addictions programming, cultural programming opportunities and employment supports.
Feedback from individuals accessing the resource centres has been overwhelmingly positive, with many stating they appreciate the convenience of being able to access supports without needing to travel to the TBDSSAB office.
- Quotes from Tenants (from Resource Centre Survey):
- “New skills are learned and I meet new people and can have an afternoon with my peers. I have been a caregiver… and I am happy to be able to access this resource.”
- “Every time someone moves in and I know them, or not, I recommend coming here and checking out what’s going on.”
- “It increases sense of community. It provides a safe space if needed.”
- “I have learned healthy recipes at the community kitchen. I have met new people and have been involved in new programming.”
“It is wonderful to see TBDSSAB recognized for working with community partners, and meeting tenants where they’re at. Congratulations to the team for being recognized for your efforts to go above and beyond to improve quality of life for the people we serve.”- Ken Boshcoff, Board Chair, TBDSSAB
“The tenant resource centres themselves are not new, but the last few years has seen an increase in variety of services and access to technology through the new tech hubs. I commend the team and our community partners for the heartfelt work that goes into ensuring much-needed services are available close to home and offered in a dignified way.”- Bill Bradica, Chief Administrative Officer, TBDSSAB