Community Voice Mail

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Community Voice Mail

Prince George, CanadaPrince George, Canada
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
$1 million - $5 million
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Connecting community and clients through technology and communication.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

As a low income housing provider working in partnership with a variety of organizations and government, we solicit and receive housing applications from those who are in need of subsidized housing and are put on a waiting list. When a home becomes available and we call individuals on the list, their numbers are out of service, no longer there, etc... The same situation rises when individuals are looking for work, appointments with counsellors, medical support, notices about upcoming events. Many cases where opportunities for advancing individual personal goals and objectives are missed because of the inability to connect with the individual.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

A community voice mail system is in operation in Vancouver hosted by Luma Native Housing and has been for 2-3 years. The voice mail host provides homeless and low income people, students and others with access to a voice mail that provides communication between them and the support services within the community. Notifications for jobs, housing availability, Dr. appointments, messages about upcoming events. Shared responsibility with all Social Service, non-profits, private sector, public sector. Provides communication for those who cannot afford or do not have access to a phone, cell phone.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

The Community Voice Mail provides a part time person who manages the voice mail,provides local training for service providers who want to participate in the program to post information or to leave a message for the client. Housing, employment, counselling sessions, activities are now available for everyone, and it does not cost the user a penny as the cost would be supported through contributions from local businesses, societies, government agencies, foundations, opportunities like BC Idea.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Our peers are all service agencies, government, the Aboriginal community, all working together, not competing. This is on solution that involves everyone working together to provide a coordinated service for those in need.

Founding Story

As a member of the Aboriginal Community and participant of the Community Partners Addressing Homelessness, I had the chance finding this solution on Luma Native Housing web page. I followed up on how the program works and what it does to address homelessness and other supports. It is very successful throughout the USA and now in Vancouver.