Recognizing that access to safe, stable and affordable housing is a key social determinant of health for everyone.
The vast majority of people who we support live on very modest incomes and face significant challenges in securing affordable housing (due to low vacancies and escalating rental rates). Many are homeless or have experienced homelessness at some point in their lives. In 2014, Cota joined the Toronto Alliance to End Homelessness (TAEH), a coalition of over 100 individuals and organizations across Toronto who are joined in an effort to end homelessness in the city.
We joined with the intent of inspiring the systemic change needed to effectively address the issue of chronic and episodic homelessness.
What We Are Doing to Inspire Change
Shortly after joining TAEH Cota’s Executive Director Paul Bruce began participating in the TAEH Coordinating Committee, which facilitates the work of the TAEH with the input of its membership. Further, Cota lead the development of a submission to the Ontario Trillium Foundation’s Collective Impact investment stream on behalf of TAEH, in 2016-2017. That application was successful and added to the previous funding we received from The Zukerman Family Foundation. Both contributions together secured funding support for the recruitment of an Executive Lead and a part-time Executive Assistant to help drive TAEH’s Collective Impact efforts.
Cota offered to be the trustee agency for the new funds and to host the office of the Executive Lead at our 550 Queen St. E. location. In September, 2016 Kira Heineck was hired as the Executive Lead for TAEH. Kira brings over 15 years of leadership experience working with coalitions attempting to address complex social issues. In October, 2017 Kathy LaBrosse came on board as her Executive Assistant. Kira has been instrumental in helping TAEH forge its strategic working relationship with the City of Toronto that was evidenced, in part, by the Toronto for All Campaign that TAEH and the City of Toronto launched together in the spring or 2017.
Moving forward, Kira will help TAEH in accomplishing the following: