Did you really need to check your phone?

This past Thursday, on the eve of National Housing Day, we launched ‘Seeing through – One community, many faces,’ a campaign aimed at changing attitudes about how people experiencing homelessness are perceived.

Have you ever walked down the street past someone holding a sign, or shaking a coffee cup and ignored them? Perhaps you pretended they weren’t there, or you looked past them at a sign in a window, or maybe you suddenly needed to check your phone? This happens far too often. What we hear from our clients is it makes them feel     invisible and even strips away a little of their dignity.

I’m sure most people don’t intend for this to happen. For a lot of people, it makes them feel uncomfortable and they are not sure how to act. This photo campaign is aimed at breaking down those barriers and helping people see those experiencing homeless for what they are, people, just like you and me. They say many of us are just a paycheck or two away from being in the same position.

I believe the launch for the campaign was a resounding success. We heard from Sue Siri, the amazing photographer who spent months immersing herself in this project and then we had the pleasure of hearing from two of our clients, one of whom recited a moving poem he had written. You could have heard a pin drop when he spoke and I noticed several teary eyes, including mine.

This campaign has four components: A photo exhibit in the Alderney Market on display until December 5, screen images in all three Metro Transit ferry terminals for the next two months, ads inside Metro   Transit busses in December, and the ‘Seeing Through’ video. I encourage you to take it all in. As well, be sure to read the rack card that accompanies the photo exhibit. It will get you thinking.

You can help keep this important topic top of mind by sharing this video on your social media networks. To learn more about how you  can help, visit us on our website.

-Don

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