Connection Centres are an initiative led by United Way. They offer wrap-around supports including trauma-informed care, substance use and mental health counselling, as well as basic needs such as showers, laundry and food. Services are client-centred, providing dignity and choice with an unrelenting focus on securing permanent housing.
Help for those living unsheltered
9 Douro Street, Stratford, N5A 3R2
70670 London Rd, Exeter, ON N0M 1S1
HOPE links; 295 Main St West
Understanding the Problem
People who experience homelessness are not distinct and separate from the rest of the population. In fact, the line between being housed and unhoused is quite fluid. In general, the pathways into and out of homelessness are neither linear nor uniform. Individuals and families who experience homelessness may not share much in common with each other, aside from the fact that they are extremely vulnerable, and lack adequate housing and income and the necessary supports to ensure they stay housed. The causes of homelessness reflect an intricate interplay between structural factors, systems failures and individual circumstances. Homelessness is usually the result of the cumulative impact of a number of factors, rather than a single cause. (Homeless Hub)
Common Causes of Homelessness
Low income, unemployment, disability.
Eviction and/or unaffordable housing. Not enough to house population.
Race, gender, ability.
Relational, behavioral, emotional or physical.
Untreated Mental Health
Lack of support and services.
Compromised health and safety.
E.g. illness, abuse, death of a loved one, divorce, job loss.
Lack of informal housing options (couch surfing and rentals) due to isolation preference and mass exodus from bigger cities
232 people are experiencing homelessness in Perth and Huron County
**As of March 2022
The United Way Connection Centre Initiative
Services offered at Connection Centres
Food & Meals
Phone, Computer, & Internet
Values of Operation
Focuses on access to basic needs, prioritizes building trust with participants and bridging gaps toward more formal supports.
Dignity and Choice
All services are voluntary, allowing participants the autonomy to determine service goals and empower them with dignity and choice.
Unrelenting in efforts to make the experience of homelessness as brief as possible and return people to permanent accommodation.
How it works
Building trust with service providers and volunteers can lead to opportunities to engage with more formal supports.
By offering informal services such as showers, food, care and concern, staff can work to build the trust of clients and then offer more formal Services such as Counselling, Legal Aid, Coordinated Access System.
Moreover, additional social services that are combating/mitigating poverty can collect in one space for ease of referrals for the client. Navigating the system can be challenging.
Choices for Change can offer Professional social workers specializing in counselling and peer support, and working with vulnerable populations
- Adult and Youth Substance Use
- Problem Gambling & Behavioral Addiction
- Peer Support
- Court Support
- Community Withdrawal Management
Examples of other potential onsite partners
- Huron Perth Public Health
- Healthcare services
- Employment services
- ODSP/OW services
- Legal aid
How can YOU help?
The Connection Centre relies on the caring and concern of our entire community to continue to serve those experiencing homelessness.
Connection Centres are funded by United Way Perth-Huron, so their viability into the future is dependant on generous donations by the public. To donate and support the connection centres, please donate here – or give us a call at (519) 271-7730.
To donate or volunteer please contact the Connection Centre Coordinators:
In Stratford Email Tanya: firstname.lastname@example.org Or call 226-921-5235
In Exeter Email Andrea: email@example.com Or call (519) 235-2991
In Listowel Email Gewneth: Gwyneth.firstname.lastname@example.org Or call 519-291-3200