Bill & Lorainne's Fundraising Page
Bill and I are so excited to be participating in the 12th annual Rally for Kids in support of the Michael Pinball Clemons Foundation (MPCF).
The Michael Pinball Clemons Foundation empowers youth through education by bringing them from the margins to the mainstream.
They invest in the best charities that provide both wrap-around and holistic approaches to local and international sustainability through education.
Important to know...The Pinball Clemons Foundation and its Volunteer Board and Sponsors take 0 dollars in return for their time and expertise. 100% of donations go directly to causes they support.
But first, this is one of the reasons why this fundraiser is so important to us and should be to everyone. Many, though not all, of the Youth MPCF supports are homeless. All are vulnerable youth who are academically, socially or economincally disenfranchised from achieving their full potential without appropriate supports.
The City of Toronto is one of the wealthiest cities in the world. Nonetheless, it has the largest homeless population in Canada.
Homeless youth in Toronto originate from all over, not just from within Toronto. They come from across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), across Ontario and, indeed, across the country...perhaps from your neighbourhood. Some are refugees who've fled war torn countries and lost families in the process.
There are only eight (8) Youth Shelters across the GTA. On any given night in Toronto, 1500-2000 youth are homeless.
- 28% of homeless people in Toronto are youth.
- 3300 to 10,000 youth experience homelessness over the course of a year ( 1 in 100 youth) in Toronto.
- 850 to 2,000 youth are homeless on any given night in Toronto. Many more are experiencing hidden homelessness.
- Youth face barriers to income support, education, paid employment and rental accommodation simply due to their age.
- The longer youth remain homeless, the worse their health and life chances become.
- Across Canada, up to 40,000 youth are homeless with 6,000 – 7000 seeking a safe place to be sheltered tonight.
- 20% of the Canadian homelessness population are youth between 13 and 24.
- The causes of youth homelessness are distinct from adult homelessness and require distinct plans of support.
- 1 in 5 shelter users in Canada are youth.
- 40% will have first experienced homelessness before the age of 16
- Represent all levels of socioeconomic, religious and cultural background and sexual orientation.
- They are between the ages of 16 and 24.
- 21% of those staying in youth shelters in Toronto identify as part of the LGBTQ2S community.
- 28.2% identify as member of racialized communities.
- 22% born outside of Canada
- 63% have experienced some form of childhood trauma and abuse.
- Are three times as likely to experience high mental health risks.
- 42% report at least one suicide attempt.
- 85.4% report high symptoms of distress.
- 57.8% have a history of foster care or group home involvement.
- Approximately 65% come from families with substance abuse problems.
- Prior to arriving at YWS, 40% have gone without food for at least one day in the past week. They are nutritionally vulnerable.
- Approximately 60% of homeless youth have completed Grade 11 or less. Up to 65% have not completed high school.
Long term Implications Of Youth Homelessness:
- The longer youth remain homeless, the greater the negative outcomes. Early intervention is key.
- Inevitable health problems during a time of rapid adolescent growth.
- Do not develop long term, healthy, trusting relationships.
- Leaving school early creates a disadvantage in the employment marketplace. Unemployment rates among high school dropouts are twice that of high school graduates.
- 1 in 3 youth experiencing homelessness graduate high school vs. 9 in 10 housed youth.
- MYTH: They want to be homeless.
- FACT: Less than six per cent are homeless by choice.
- MYTH: They are to blame for being homeless.
- FACT: Most homeless people are victims. Some have suffered from child abuse or violence. Nearly one quarter are children. Many have lost their jobs. All have lost their homes.
- MYTH: Most homeless people live on the street.
- FACT: Most homeless people don’t live on the street. More than 80% of Canada’s homeless are improperly housed or on the verge of eviction. Many are sleeping in temporary beds – with friends or relatives, in church basements, in welfare motels, in abandoned buildings and vehicles, and in other sites away from the public eye. They are the hidden homeless.
- MYTH: They don’t work.
- FACT: Many homeless people are among the working poor. A person earning a minimum wage can’t earn enough to support a family of three or pay innercity rent.
- MYTH: They are mentally ill.
- FACT: About 40 per cent of the homeless are estimated to be struggling with mental health. One per cent may need longterm hospitalization; the others can become self sufficient with help.
- MYTH: They are heavy drug users.
- FACT: Some homeless are substance abusers; research suggests one in five. Many of these are included in the 30 per cent who suffer from mental illness.
- MYTH: They are dangerous.
- FACT: Sometimes an encounter with the homeless may end in tragedy. However, this is extremely rare. In general, the homeless are among the least threatening group in our society. They are often the victims of crimes, not the perpetrators.
As MPCF Donors and volunteers ourselves, we can personally attest to the incredible successes we have witnessed first-hand through our involvement over the past four years. Nothing we have done or have been involved with in our lives has given us the satisfaction that we've known since becoming involved with MPCF.
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