Reimagining Community | My Assignment Tutor

1Healing Homelessness: Reimagining CommunityStudent NameNorQuest CollegeENGL 2550 A0XAssignment 2b: Essay OutlineInstructor NameDue Date2Healing Homelessness: Reimagining CommunityIntroductionIntroductory Statement: Homelessness is often described as a cycle that is hard to break, andthousands of Albertans find themselves caught in this cycle without a clear way out.Thesis: The most effective way to positively influence the cycle of homelessness in Alberta is bycreating a productive community where people can maintain housing stability, employmentstatus, and get the support they need while finding somewhere to belong.Summary of main ideas:• Services provided by provincial governments to people experiencing homelessness arecurrently ineffective in creating long-lasting pathways from homelessness.• Shelters and other programs available to homeless people are uncoordinated and oftencontribute to confusion and difficulty finding employment and stable housing.• Building and maintaining positive relationships are imperative to the well-being ofpeople experiencing poverty.• Taking a broader view of homelessness and building a community with the intent toaddress multiple issues at the same time is a more effective way of helping people in needthan the solutions currently in place.Main Idea #1Claim: Services provided by provincial governments to people experiencing homelessness arecurrently ineffective in creating long-lasting pathways from homelessness.3Evidence:• There is limited access to government provided services to begin with in rural towns likeFort McMurray and these services are often already overextended (Dashora et al., 2018).• Many people experiencing homelessness don’t know where to find the help they need,are unaware of specialized services that exist to help them or rely on shelters alone toprovide support (Shier et al., 2011).• Tools used by service providers for determining housing eligibility, such as the ServicePrioritization Decision Assistance Tool (SPDAT), allow some people in need of housingassistance to be overpassed if they don’t meet every single requirement (Shier et al.,2011).Significance: Homelessness is not a new problem, and traditional methods employed by thegovernment are failing to break the cycle. Efforts are being made to aid these vulnerablepopulations, but long-term outcomes are failing to meet the expectations of people who utilizegovernment-run programs. As a result, they often fall back into the cycle of homelessness.Main Idea #2Claim: Shelters and other programs available to homeless people are uncoordinated and oftencontribute to confusion and difficulty finding employment and stable housing.Evidence:• Many shelters enforce stringent rules, have limited opening hours or a limited number ofbeds, creating danger when there is nowhere for people to find safety from harsh winterweather conditions (Dashora et al., 2018).4• Employment services are offered by the government and finding a job is crucial to asuccessful pathway from homelessness, but a positive state of well-being includes morethan just employment (Johnstone et al., 2016).• Many service providers are not working together or are unaware of the services offeredby each other, leaving gaps where vital services are needed (Dashora et al., 2018).• “Care must be offered in a consistent and collaborative manner to be effective”(Dashora et al., 2018, p. 141).Significance: The foundations for successful pathways from homelessness have been laid downby the government of Alberta, but the problem of homelessness is complex. When there areinconsistencies in the system that is meant to help fix the problem, the cycle of homelessnessremains unbroken and remains an issue. Necessary changes include re-evaluating shelterpolicies, increasing communication among service providers, and ensuring that locations areproperly staffed.Main Idea #3Claim: Building and maintaining positive relationships are imperative to the well-being ofpeople experiencing poverty.Evidence:• Dashora et al. (2018) explain that for staff in rural towns, “the high turnover of outreachworkers [is] not conducive to addressing the complex needs of some of their clients” (p.144).• Long-term support is needed for people exiting homelessness, and though family isconsidered an important emotional resource, many homeless people have little family5contact because of social stigma or to avoid hindering their loved ones (Shier et al.,2011).• “Declines in social support were associated with declines in well-being, which improvedwhen social support improved, and the effects were consistent even when controlling forhousing status, alcohol use and employment status” (Johnstone et al., 2016, p. 421).Significance: Homeless people are in a situation that is unique to their population and requirespecially trained counsellors and staff to work with. If case workers in shelters are constantlycoming and going, building trust and therapeutic relationships becomes difficult. Theserelationships are necessary to ensure that homeless people can be heard and understood in orderto resolve the problems that brought them into poverty in the first place, increasing the likelihoodthat their exit from homelessness will be permanent.Main Idea #4Claim: Taking a broader view of homelessness and building a community with the intent toaddress multiple issues at the same time is a more effective way of helping people in need thanthe solutions currently in place.Evidence:• It can be challenging for people to escape the lifestyle associated with being homelesswhen they are surrounded by others who do not share the same values or desires thatthey do (Shier et al., 2011).• Shier et al. (2011) note that “the gaps between different elements of a person’s socialcommunity were being bridged only by the service delivery system, and often thisrepresented a lone positive force in the lives of [homeless people]” (p. 470).6• Delivery of social support services is not an adequate replacement for the positiveimpact that stable community has on a successful pathway from homelessness (Shier etal., 2011).Significance: Creating a community where homeless people can secure stable housing,employment, and assistance overcoming addiction and mental health problems would be anefficient approach to ending the cycle of homelessness. Rather than providing support in eacharea alone, a more comprehensive approach would allow multiple issues to be tackled at thesame time. This would allow for a positive change in overall well-being and create a ripple effectin the lives of people experiencing homelessness.ConclusionRestatement of argument: Reimagining community in Alberta with a more supportiveapproach can be a lasting and effective solution to homelessness.Significance of main points: A substantial effort is being made with current social supports andservices being offered to homeless people, but they are not often accomplishing the desiredoutcome of lasting pathways away from homelessness. Instead of working together, they areincoherent and can keep people from achieving lasting pathways from homelessness. Theseservices are offered with good intentions but without consideration for the importance ofbuilding therapeutic relationships to increase well-being. Multi-dimensional approaches tocommunity must be considered when searching for long-term solutions to homelessness.Concluding statement: Constructive communities built with the purpose of providing support inevery area of a person’s life, instead of just providing housing, is necessary to ensure permanentexits from homelessness.7ReferencesDashora, P., Kiaras, S., & Richter, S. (2018). Homelessness in a resource-dependent ruralcommunity: A community-based approach. Journal of Rural & Community Development,13(3), 133–151.Johnstone, M., Parsell, C., Jetten, J., Dingle, G., & Walter, Z. (2016). Breaking the cycle ofhomelessness: Housing stability and social support as predictors of long-term well-being.Housing Studies, 31(4), 410–426. https://doi.org/10.1080/02673037.2015.1092504Shier, M., Jones, M., & Graham, J. (2011). Social communities and homelessness: A broaderconcept analysis of social relationships and homelessness. Journal of Human Behavior inthe Social Environment, 21(5), 455–474. https://doi.org/10.1080/10911359.2011.566449

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