Joe, Community Builders Construction Training Program Grad
“The program has taught me that I’m capable of learning lots of new things, even during the hardest times of my life, and that no matter what obstacles are in your way, anything is possible. “
Joe is a 23 year old who participated in Community Builders’ Construction Training Program. A few weeks into the program, he confided in one of the trainers that he was sleeping outside on the street. With the money he had earned in the program and the help of the Community Builders staff, he was able to rent an apartment. Now Joe works full time at Community Builders as part of their construction crew and aspires to one day build a house from the ground up.
The Abel* family, before moving into their new home
Right now, we don’t have a home. So, getting this home means a lot to us. Home is one of the basic needs for human beings to live in this world. I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your kind support to our family.
*name has been changed
Sean Gadon, Director of Affordable Housing Office, City of Toronto
The City of Toronto is very pleased to participate in Raising the Roof’s Reside Program… We see the Reside Program as an important initiative in creating new community-based housing solutions for youth in Toronto. We are particularly excited that the Reside Program has the potential to be scaled up to provide housing opportunities for vulnerable youth in towns and cities from coast to coast to coast.
Mazdak, Building Up Training Grad
After successfully completing the transformative and comprehensive in-class portion, I was granted the opportunity to work on the Eastern Ave site. Under the direction of the foreman, Julio, and the lead hand Carl, I was able to learn through experience how to carry myself on a construction site and was also given the opportunity to be taught a variety of practical skills.
The speed with which I have been able to reach this point in my life transition would not have been possible without the help I received from Building Up. The amazing math lessons, the broad financial supports, and the useful guidance from instructors, case managers, and site supervisors were foundational in my ability to achieve my career dreams. I am now registered with the United Brotherhood of Carpenters Local 27, and am working with Flynn in the Metals department doing sub-framing and building envelope on the Simpson Tower at 401 Bay St.
Michael Redhead Champagne, Fearless R2W
Fearless R2W recently engaged in a federally funded innovation research project from the National Housing Strategy and generated a road map with recommendations to support Indigenous youth aging out of care in Winnipeg. These recommendations include establishing safe transitional housing for young people aging out of child welfare supported by Indigenous values informed kinship supports.
Fearless R2W as an organization has a set of values that were developed in 2015 that have guided us in our work, and we believe that this project reflects our belief that it is all of our responsibility to take care of all of the children all of the time. We are excited to provide any referrals and resources from our kinship initiatives and our circles of support to the inhabitants of this house including any related to reclaiming their Indigenous culture or Indigenous kinship practices.
We look forward to supporting these families and individuals involved in this project and are excited to make this a success and a welcoming home.
Lisa Horrocks, HOTT
HOTT is delighted to be partnering with Raising the Roof to support a refugee family with the opportunity of having a long-term, stable and affordable home in Toronto. We have great respect for Raising the Roof as an organization and the innovative, transformative approach they take to creating housing and career development opportunities through the Reside Program. Their approach has a high impact on individual lives as well as providing broader social and community benefit by renovating housing that would have otherwise been vacant. As HOTT continues working hard to provide affordable housing and a helping hand in communities across Toronto, Raising the Roof’s dedication and the support of many wonderful partners, means that we are making the most of every available opportunity to provide housing to those who need it most.
Kalen Taylor, Purpose Construction
Purpose Construction is a proud social enterprise construction company offering a range of residential, commercial and property management services. We provide skilled trades training and long-term jobs to people with barriers to employment, pay living wages and offer a supportive work environment.
We look forward to creating this first Reside project in Winnipeg with Raising the Roof, as well as other projects to create much needed affordable housing in Winnipeg.
Lucille Bruce, End Homelessness Winnipeg
A key pillar of the work of End Homelessness Winnipeg is to increase affordable housing supply. End Homelessness Winnipeg predicts at least 1,340 new units of housing are needed in the next five years to respond to the needs of Winnipeggers. We know we need new and creative partnerships to see this housing built.
We welcome Raising the Roof’s entry into Winnipeg, brining their expertise from Ontario, to help Winnipeg achieve this target.
Mayor Jeff Lehman, City of Barrie
The social impact of Community Builders and their Construction Trainee Program will be far reaching, benefiting families in need, specifically individuals with barriers to employment. Recipients will receive paid training and life skills development in the construction industry with a focus on creating and maintaining affordable housing. The training will provide hands on trades training, math, essential skills training, career planning and employment support. This will assist with lifting families out of poverty, providing access to full time higher paying jobs and in turn reducing or eliminating social assistance payments and government subsidies.
Mayor Steve Clarke, City of Orillia
There is a critical need for additional affordable housing with support services in the City of Orillia. I am happy to support the concept and ultimately increase the supply of affordable housing and employment opportunities in the community. As Council recently indicated, we will continue to look for ways to bring this project to successful implementation and look forward to working alongside Raising the Roof to create new social impact in our community.
Senay Mosazghi, Purpose Construction
[Purpose Construction] has been very helpful to me and my family, and it’s very helpful to the community, this job gives me comfort and gives me more sense of purpose. I was working at a very hard job site, but I’m thinking it’s helping the community, and it gave me more courage in my heart. I see Purpose Construction giving back to the community, and I need to be with a company like this”
Senay started working at Purpose Construction as a refugee and newcomer to Canada. Purpose was Senay’s first employer after fleeing religious persecution and war in Eretria. At Purpose, he was able to develop his English while learning trades-based skills and earning Canadian work experience. Today, Senay’s infectious good nature is a major asset to the Purpose Construction family. He is a skilled carpenter, managing large teams on commercial and residential jobs.
Mayor Allan Thompson, Town of Caledon
In my role as Mayor of Caledon, I am always looking for projects that offer a wide variety of community benefits to my community. Raising the Roof’s Reside model, turned a vacant church into affordable housing in our community, while training residents with barriers to employment to gain careers in construction through the process. They also fully greened the building and it is now an integrated and affordable shared housing model for two persons with developmental disabilities [a third person moved in in 2021] and one non-disabled person.
I was so inspired by this project that we dedicated the proceeds from our annual Caledon Council Charity Golf Tournament to Raising the Roof to help fund the work at 1 Cedar Mains. It is our hope that we will have the opportunity to work with Raising the Roof on similar Reside projects in the future.
Tim Kent, CEO of Redwood Park Communities
This is an important opportunity to create much-needed safe, affordable, hopeful housing in Orillia, and Redwood Park Communities is excited to be part of it. We look forward to partnering on this project and others in the near future.
Tarah Clark, Building Up
Building Up is thrilled about our growing partnership with Raising the Roof. Raising the Roof provides our participants with the unique training opportunity of first hand work experience in construction. By renovating vacant spaces into energy efficient affordable housing our participants build not only their skills, confidence and employability, but they also go home proud of the work they have done. Our work with Raising the Roof gives us the ability to truly set our participants up for success in both their careers and their lives.
Thank you to our sponsors!
When Ryan reached out to us at WakeWater, we were stoked to support his fundraiser! As a better for you energy drink, the functional benefits are perfect for his impressive athletic endeavour. Beyond that, we felt his mission resonated well with WakeWater’s values. At WakeWater, we believe that everyone needs a little bit of a boost to accomplish even the Little Victories in life. We see a future where our community is empowered by and recognized for everything they accomplish everyday, no matter how big or small. We’re so excited to be along for this big victory, and to help fuel Ryan along the way!
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