Street Outreach & Support Services
The journey to find mino bimaadiziwin (the good life) is not a straight and narrow path. For many of our clients, homelessness is connected to a loss of culture and identity. This is why for us providing a “roof over your head” is only the beginning.
We provide help in every dimension possible from a place filled with respect and dignity. Every person, every journey, every spirit is different. Each community member takes the help they need – when they are ready for it.
As you transition from the streets to home, accessing services can be difficult. Our Outreach and Support Services program helps clients:
- Find a doctor or walk-in clinic
- Reach appointments on time
- Deal with landlords and housing issues
- Access food banks and meal sites
- Find an ID (Identification) Clinic to get a SIN, birth certificate, OHIP health card
- Help with applications and government forms
Na-Me-Res Outreach can help you while you’re street homeless and will continue working with you through the process of finding housing for a full year after. Our After Care Program will then help you deal with any issues that may arise during your transition.
Support for our clients doesn’t stop once they’ve transitioned to permanent housing. Our Housing Aftercare Program includes a team of dedicated workers that offer a wide range of support from eviction prevention and housing maintenance to mental and physical health, community integration, spiritual needs, and support.
The overall goal of this program is to ensure that homeless individuals effectively transition into housing and build their stability by addressing all elements of their health and well-being, using an Indigenous approach.
Mino Kaanjigoowin: Changing My Direction In Life
Through the Mino Kaanjigoowin program, clients challenged with severe mental illness and addiction issues are provided with intensive case management to meet their particular needs.
Mino Kaanjigoowin means, “Finding the good to change yourself or your direction in life”. So, if you’re struggling with mental health or addiction, this program is designed to help put you on the right path. As with all Na-Me-Res programs, we’ll help you find housing then together we’ll create a plan that will work for you in the long run.
The Mino Kaanjigoowin care team includes:
Covid Clinic - Auduzhe Mino Nesewinong (Place of Healthy Breathing)
Auduzhe Mino Nesewinong (“Place of Healthy Breathing”) delivers culturally sensitive support and services to the community while bridging the gap in access to healthcare often experienced by Indigenous peoples. The site offers Indigenous clients a suite of services including integrated COVID-19 testing, case management, contact tracing, outreach support, and referrals.
The centre is a collaboration between Na-Me-Res, Seventh Generation Midwives Toronto (SGMT), Well Living House at St. Michael’s Hospital, and the Centre for Wise Practices in Indigenous Health at Women’s College Hospital. The facility is housed in a Na-Me-Res building and staffed by Na-Me-Res, SGMT, Well Living House, Inner City Health Associates, and Women’s College Hospital. Tests will be processed by the labs at St. Michael’s and Mount Sinai Hospitals
If you need testing or more info/vaccines please contact 416 654 4184.
NILO – Native Inmate Liasion Officers
The Ministry of the Solicitor General is committed to providing Indigenous, First Nations, Inuit and Métis inmates access to their traditional spiritual practices, and ensuring these practices are given the same status and protections afforded other faith groups.
The NILO program provides liaison services between Indigenous clients and the community to ensure access to resources aimed at meeting their educational, employment, housing, health, or other identified needs.
The program supports Indigenous inmates with cultural and spiritual resources required to deliver healing and wellness activities such as sweat lodge ceremonies, healing circles, smudging, and drumming.
The program also delivers Indigenous culture awareness training for Ministry staff to encourage their awareness and understanding of Indigenous cultural.
Apaenmowineen: Having Confidence In Myself
Apaenmowineen is a 3-to-6-month program that helps clients develop the life skills needed to maintain stable housing, find employment and build community.
The Apaenmowineen workshops include:
Literacy and Employment
Community gardening at the Medicine Wheel Garden
Creative writing and Photography
Learn the history and culture of the Indigenous people
Cree language classes
Clients participating in the Apaenmowineen program stay at Sagatay for one year. Once the program is completed, they can move to one of our affordable, long-term accommodations.
Ngim Kowa Njichaag: Reclaiming My Spirit
The goal of the Ngim Kowa Njichaag program is to assist all Na-Me-Res clients in claiming their culture, identity, role, and responsibilities through the delivery of culture-based services within a safe, healing environment.
Many of our clients have found that connecting or reconnecting with their culture helps them meet their goals, increase their self-esteem and confidence, as well as connect with a community that understands their path. Facilitated by an Oshkabaywis (spiritual helper), it can help you to reclaim Indigenous culture and identity in a compassionate and healing environment.
Medicine Wheel Garden
The Medicine Wheel Garden in Hillcrest Park is Toronto’s first Aboriginal community garden. Truly a one-of-a-kind sacred space, it has given the men of the Apaenmowineen program an opportunity to learn more about gardening and Aboriginal medicinal plants.
On August 13, 2013, Elder Jacqui Lavalley named this green space in Hillcrest Park “Mashkikii;aki’ing” (Medicine Earth), and The Medicine Wheel Garden came into being. Every week, the men meet to garden and improve communication, teamwork, healthy living, and employment skills. They also reap the rewards of their hard work as the harvested plants and vegetables are used to cook healthy meals for the Na-Me-Res residences.
The possibilities for growth in this garden come not only from the plants but also within the hearts of the participants and volunteers.
The Espaniel/Menzies Education Fund
Every year, the Espaniel/Menzies Education Fund provides a modest bursary to two Indigenous men to help them further their education through secondary, post-secondary, or apprenticeship programs. These $500 awards can be used towards school-related expenses such as tuition, books, and supplies, or transportation.
To be eligible for the bursary, you must be:
A Na-Me-Res program participant for at least 6 months
Enrolled in a secondary, post-secondary, or apprenticeship program