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

‘Surrounding a community with a fire break won’t help’

RDCK offers fire danger assessments to homeowners

Caribou panel hears from critical public

About 250 people turned out Wednesday evening to give feedback on the provincial government’s caribou recovery plans.

LETTER: Bike lanes overdue

From reader Nancy Rosenblum

Mungall to host CleanBC open house in Nelson

Michelle Mungall is hosting an open house on CleanBC at L.V. Rogers on Tuesday from 4:30 to 6 p.m.

Dashcam captures close call between minivan, taxi at busy Vancouver intersection

To make the footage more nerve-wracking, a pedestrian can be seen standing at the corner

Waste not: Kootenay brewery leftovers feed the local food chain

Spent grains from the Trail Beer Refinery are donated to local farmers and growers, none go to waste

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, 35 people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

B.C. mom wages battle to get back four kids taken from her in Egypt

Sara Lessing of Mission has help from Abbotsford law firm

VIDEO: Fire guts Peachland home

Crews are still on scene pumping water onto the blaze in the Okanagan neighbourhood

$6K raised in one day’s time for family of woman gunned down in Penticton

GoFundMe launched for family of Darlene Knippelberg, to pay for funeral costs and other expenses

B.C. mountain biker sent home from hospital twice, despite broken vertebrae

Released in Maple Ridge to go home with three fractured vertebrae

Seven tips to travel safely this Easter long weekend

An average of three people are killed, and hundreds more injured, each Easter long weekend in B.C.

Seattle’s 4-20 ‘protestival’ enjoys tolerance, some support – and B.C. could do the same

Seattle’s Hempfest a large-scale occasions with vendors, prominent musical acts and thousands of attendees

Most Read