Street outreach workers hired

The new employees will be on the streets in October.

From left

The Nelson Street Culture Collaborative has hired three part-time outreach workers in a year-long pilot project to work with people living on the streets in Nelson. Their five person team will include two Selkirk College nursing students.

For the rest of this month they will be in orientation and training, according to Rona Park, executive director of the Nelson Community Services Society, which will administer the project. Park said they will also be visiting businesses and service organizations to introduce themselves.

“Then they will hit the streets in earnest in October,” Park says, adding that people should not expect instant miracles until the workers are trained and on the job for a while. The first few months will be an experiment, she said, in terms of their hours of work and the approach they take, and it will depend on the needs of the street population.

Park explained to the Star in July that the outreach workers will introduce themselves to the people who appear regularly on the street, get to know them, and offer non-threatening support and assessment, helping them to find what they need to get stabilized and supported. She said the workers will also get acquainted with downtown business people.

The outreach workers will also have to work out how they coordinate with local police. At a meeting for business people about the project last Thursday, Chief Paul Burkart of the Nelson Police Department, who is a member of the street culture collaborative group, said they will find a balance.

“If it is a safety issue, call the police. It will be a partnership. They will be called when we shouldn’t be. We will be called when they shouldn’t be.

“We don’t know how well it will work, the same as you didn’t know when you started your businesses,” Burkart said.

The three street outreach workers come from different but relevant backgrounds, Park says.

“Ryall Giuliano’s experience is working with youth on the streets and in homeless shelters in Summerland and in Guelph Ontario, helping youth get oriented and transitioned into adulthood. Jeremy Kelly is coming from his experience in Vancouver in the Downtown Eastside, working with volunteer organizations there. Bernadette White has volunteered a lot here in the community and knows the street culture population really well, just from personal experience.”

 

Related stories

Responding to ‘those who rely on the street to survive’ October 15, 2015

Nelson Street Culture Collaborative starts to make inroads January 27, 2016

Nelson’s street people: who are they? (with video) March 25, 2016

Nelson street culture group makes eight recommendations April 6, 2016

City contributes $10,000 to street outreach project August 11, 2016

Street outreach workers hired September, 2016

 

Just Posted

What’s Up: Things to see and do on Family Day

There’s plenty of fun to be had across the West Kootenay this coming long weekend!

Seven Nelson rec projects granted Columbia Basin Trust funding

Nelson’s baseball and tennis clubs were the big winners

Sanchez leads Leafs to 6th straight win

Nelson held off Spokane 3-2 on Friday

UPDATE: Two-car accident closes Highway 3A at Thrums

Road expected to open for single-lane alternating traffic at 2 p.m.

CHECK THIS OUT: Love and e-Readers

Anne DeGrace on downloading new literary relationships

VIDEO: Historic night in Red Deer as 2019 Canada Winter Games kicks off

Star-studded Opening Ceremony features athletes from across Canada

B.C. students win Great Waters Challenge video contest

Video, mural and song about saving the salmon claims the top prize

B.C. couple attacked with acid, slashed with knife in Vietnam

Warning, graphic images: Man has burns on 80 per cent of his body, slashed with knife

Flying squirrels found to glow pink in the dark, including two from B.C.

Squirrels from Hope and Abbotsford were included in the biologists’ database

Ontario police field complaints over Amber Alert for missing girl, 11, found dead

Some said the Amber Alert issued late Thursday for Riya Rajkumar disrupted their sleep

Names keep adding to vaccine petition started by B.C. mom

Maple Ridge mom started campaign to make vaccination a condition of attending school

Northern B.C. First Nation clan says ancient tools found at pipeline work site

Archeologists from the Smithsonian Institute estimate one of the stones found dates back up to 3500 years

Wilson-Raybould resignation stokes anger, frustration within veterans community

Liberals have had three veterans-affairs ministers — Kent Hehr, Seamus O’Regan and Wilson-Raybould

Most Read