Incredible youth volunteers

The other day, I was reading the Champion article on the incredible youth volunteer Hannah Goodwin and it made me think of the famous quote from Carmen Martine.

“The more we increase the active participation and partnership with young people, the better we serve them. And the more comprehensively we work with them as service partners, the more we increase our public value to the entire community.”

You will often hear that the youth of today shape tomorrow’s future but at Milton Transitional Housing we don’t have to hear it from anyone – we see it on a regular basis.

Take young Hannah Goodwin for example. Hannah, at age 15, has already been a familiar face to anyone attending a fundraiser hosted by MTH. She has been an active participant in our youth leadership training as well as acting as our youth outreach ambassador and volunteering regularly in such events as the Coldest Night of the Year and Empty Bowls.

The Champion highlighted the amazing commitment Hannah has to Milton in their article, which can be found here 

In it, Hannah is quoted as saying “I’ve learned that (homelessness) is here, not just something that’s happening far away. It can be affecting anyone,” said Goodwin. “I know it’s not always vivid to see in a small community, but it’s important for people to know it’s still there.”

I also saw first-hand some amazing activism earlier this year from three grade eight students at Boyne Public School. Aleema, Jasra and Esther chose to do a project on homelessness. Not only did they create a display, a power point, and a Ted Talk on homelessness to present to their fellow students, they also undertook their own fundraising initiative. They sold water, cookies and freezies and raised over $270 which they donated to MTH.

The above photo is the pamphlet created by these grade eight students to support their fundraising. It was incredibly inspiring for me to attend their school presentation and see the incredible work they’ve done. The level of advocacy, commitment and dedication to helping other shown by the youth of Milton never ceases to amaze me.

Hannah, Aleema, Jasra and Esther – you are rock stars in our eyes and I am so grateful to you for all that you’ve done to help the homeless, hungry and hurting in our own backyard.

Kudos to each and every one of you! And thank you again for helping Milton Transitional Housing be there for those who need us.

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Bring on the New Year


What a year it has been here at Milton Transitional Housing, and it is all thanks to you, our wonderful supporters and volunteers.

MTH has grown in so many ways over the past year – more events, new board members, and more graduates!!! Our little program has grown from three client families in three units when I started in 2014 to nine client families in nine units!! That’s three times the number of families we can help, thanks to you. And what a wide variety of clients we serve now – from single clients to families, single mothers with children to a newly married couple, from a senior citizen to a newcomer family – they’ve all become members of our client family, and I couldn’t be happier.

And did I mention the nine graduates as well? That’s nine client families who came to us homeless and in the past three years have gone on to the long-term stable, affordable housing of their own!

This Christmas season was particularly heartwarming. Thanks to the generosity of local churches such as Grace Anglican, Knox Presbyterian, Boston Presbyterian and First Community Church, as well Brookville Public School, Pack a Bag Foundation and Steve’s Christmas Acres Fundraiser, our clients had an amazing holiday. From the brightly wrapped presents to the books, socks, and pajamas, from the food hampers and gift cards – it was truly heartwarming to see our community come together to ensure everyone had a bright and Merry Christmas.

This was also the year we saw the most ever given in personal donations from so many people who believe in what MTH is doing and reached out to help. Our first ever events – The Comedy Roast of Mayor Gord Krantz and the Stay At Home Gala were both popular and fun for those involved. Thank you to everyone who supported these new events, as well as our other events Fashionista Flip and the popular, family-friendly event Coldest Night of the Year Walk! Fundraisers are so important to what we do, but it is seeing so many happy, smiling faces at events like the Coldest Night of the Year Walk that help keep us motivated and engaged year round. There truly aren’t enough words to thank you all for always being there for MTH and the people we serve.

We also saw our Board of Directors increase this year – welcoming new Board members Wendy Roberts, John Pollard, Ken Eady and Marshall Horner. I am already seeing the impact of new voices and new ideas in the agency and can’t wait to see what the next year holds for this dynamic bunch of volunteers.

We also mourned one of our own this year – the loss of our friend and volunteer extraordinaire Freda Flook was a blow we were slow to recover from. Freda’s impish grin and attention to detail enhanced everything she participated in, and she is sorely missed.

2017 also marked a time of new relationships for MTH – many thanks to the 100 Women Who Care, who made us a charity of choice at their October meeting as well as the Community Foundation of Halton North who honoured us with a grant this year. Many thanks as well to the Oakville Milton Real Estate Board and GEAR Foundation for their continued support. And I would be remiss if I didn’t take this moment to thank Halton Region as well – their support through the rent subsidy program and the community investment fund has made a world of difference to those we serve, and I am incredibly grateful.

What a year 2017 was for us – I can’t wait to see what 2018 will hold! Hopefully, I will have a chance to see and thank all of you at one of our upcoming events – The Coldest Night of the Year launch on January 20, the Coldest Night of the Year Walk on February 24 or the Fashionista Flip on April 13 and 14. There are lots of ideas for new events as well, and I always need help planning them – if you are interested in volunteering on one of our committees, please let me know. I’d love to work more closely with you.

I hope you have a wonderful New Year and I look forward to seeing everyone in 2018.

All the Best,


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Check out Milton Transitional Housing at Milton’s hottest summer events!

Be sure to stop by and check out the community booth for Milton Transitional Housing at some of Milton’s hottest summer events!

Come to say hi to our hardworking volunteers at tomorrow’s  11th annual Downtown Milton Street Festival.

Visit our booth at the west end of Main Street for some free tattoos for the kids (and for the adults too if they ask nicely)

Downtown Milton Street Festival

The Downtown Milton Street Festival runs from noon to 11 pm and Main Street through downtown Milton will be closed from 5 am to allow for set up. This amazing community event is free to enjoy with a wide variety of community booths to browse, children’s activities and entertainment on three stages and one performance area. Milton Transit is free for the day for those traveling to the festival, and there will be a wide variety of vendors and food options for those looking to buy lunch or dinner.

You can find out more about the bus or entertainment schedules here

I hope you stop by to say hi to our volunteers, sport a new temporary tattoo (we have superheroes, butterflies and more!) and find out more about the great work that MTH is doing in the community.

After the street festival – be sure to stop and say hello to us this summer at the Milton Farmer’s Market – we will have a booth in front of Knox Church on July 15 and August 26th

Interested in being part of the work we do – ask about our volunteer opportunities and our ambassador program!

Have a great weekend and enjoy the sunshine and the festival!



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Lorna Turner honoured with Community Volunteer Award!

It was an absolute honour to be invited to join MTH Volunteer Extraordinaire Lorna Turner as she was awarded by Volunteer Halton as Milton’s Community Volunteer of the Year.


Volunteer of the Year, Lorna Turner, National Volunteer Week, Volunteer Halton

Picture l-r Bob Walker, Ruth Parkinson, Lorna Turner, Margot Johnson and Audrey Peddie – all of whom have been involved, in one way or another, since the very beginning.

Lorna does such an incredible amount for MTH, often behind the scenes with little fanfare. She co-chairs, along with Margot Johnson,  Coldest Night of the Year, our biggest annual fundraiser. She sits on the Communications Committee, manages a large part of the MTH communications strategy and writes and submits all of our grants. To see her recognized and honoured for that, and all the other work she does in our community was a phenomenal experience, and I am so grateful to have been invited to share in the celebration.

“Volunteers are the backbone of any non-profit organization, and I often say that the true strength of MTH is the quantity and quality of the volunteers we are so fortunate to have to support us.”

Every year MTH honours a Volunteer of the Year and our 2016 Volunteer of the Year, Freda Flook, is known to many for her meticulous and comprehensive tracking of volunteer data as well as her efficiency and organizational skills behind so many of our community events.

Volunteering can take so many forms. I hesitate to begin trying to list the amazing men and women who have, in the past two months, made bot our Coldest Night of the Year and Empty Bowls so successful. I know if I try to list them, I will inadvertently leave someone out, so I will simply thank each and every one of them from the bottom of my heart for the work that they do.

As well, we have our amazing crew of helpers from Community Living North Halton (clockwise from bottom left: Sharon, James, Greg, and Tanya).

This incredible team of community volunteers springs into action when a client graduates, cleaning and making the vacant unit ready for the next client. Without them, we’d struggle to make sure that new clients were moving into their new homes on a timely basis, and so having the help of Sharon, James, Greg and their super leader Tanya from Community Living North Halton has a tangible effect on how we do what we do, and I am so grateful to them.

This blog (and my slow learning of how to manage it!) wouldn’t be possible without an extraordinary amount of volunteer hours put in by John Gregory and his company Opencity Inc. John undertook a complete remake of our website and is still on hand to answer my panicked calls when I can’t get an image to load or spacing to work properly.

Lorna Turner, Volunteer of the Year, Community Volunteer, National Volunteer Week

National Volunteer Week

As our Mayor Gord Krantz often says “I would be remiss if” I didn’t acknowledge the indomitable group who founded Milton Transitional Housing just a few short years ago and have dedicated tireless volunteer hours to bring us to the success we now have. We salute and thank all of you, along with all of the truly wonderful dedicated people who volunteer in so many ways to MTH. National Volunteer Week is drawing to close but the time, difference, work and support all of you amazing people will live on, long after National Volunteer Week has come and gone.

Thanks to all of you for all that you do. We couldn’t do it without you! Donna

Explore our volunteer opportunities
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How our volunteers underpin MTH success

MTH has been built by our volunteers in Milton to support those in a housing crisis in our community.

We need volunteers for our Fund Development Committee and at our events. Learn how you can help MTH as a volunteer without leaving your couch.

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