Build Homes Not Barriers developed a community engagement plan for Stepping Stone Community Services Society (SSCSS), a BC registered non-profit organization in Langley. The plan was implemented over four to six weeks to help SSCSS overcome local barriers and opposition toward the building of their new supportive housing complex.
Testimonial Submitted by: Fraser Holland, Stepping Stone Community Services Society
Stepping Stone Community Services Society’s experience with Build Homes Not Barriers (BHNB) was very positive and helpful. When BHNB connected with Stepping Stone and some of our community partners one of the first things that happened was an open conversation about the path traveled so far. From supports to challenges both logistically and within the community —all areas were discussed and examined. James Caspersen of the Homelessness Services Association of BC (HSABC) and Peer-Daniel Krause of BC Non-Profit Housing Association brought their unique skill sets, as well as experience with similar housing projects that had raised emotions in other communities, to help broaden our perspective. They offered suggestions and options for moving forward that we hadn’t considered, and helped streamline the processes that we had already put into place.
BHNB helped develop a plan for the last four to six weeks of the public engagement process leading up to the public hearing. It covered social media, grassroots connections, positive messaging as well as ensuring community partnerships remained active, effective and supported. While being aware of, and sensitive to, the unique aspects of Langley and how the proposed supportive housing project would impact our community BHNB brought ideas, tools and represented regional support for the project while working with Stepping Stone and our community partners and BC Housing. The end result was that when the date for our public hearing arrived we had a diverse array of support represented from within our community and our region and we could present a united, supportive voice and presence focused on the hope this project represented as well as respecting the concerns being raised. This, in part, led to a unanimous vote in favor of our supportive housing project in the Township of Langley.
If you have an affordable housing proposal in the works and need help with community engagement, please visit buildhomesnotbarriers.ca for more information.