Date: June 10th, 2019
New Journey Housing celebrates 10 years of working with newcomers in Winnipeg
A Winnipeg-based charity, New Journey Housing (NJH) opened in 2009 and has since worked with over 30,000 clients that are working hard to make Winnipeg and Manitoba their new home. On June 6th, NJH celebrated this achievement with fellow partners in the settlement sector, NJH past and current clients, and many other supporters from the community.
Throughout the past 10 years NJH has worked with clients and families that had various housing issues like bedbug/cockroach infestations, no heat in winter time, increasing rents that are unaffordable, living in housing that is too small, learning to navigate Residential Tenancies Branch, among many other issues. The goal of NJH is to empower its clients to make their own housing decision and to work through any housing issue they may be facing. Learning how to rent or even buy a home is very complicated and knowing the right information at the starting point can help save a lot of distress in the future. Founders Paul and Susan Ash shared their own housing experiences and why they wanted to give back to the community with the creation of a housing resource centre for newcomers. “We, as English speaking Canadians, had trouble figuring out how to rent a house in Winnipeg so we couldn’t imagine how someone that has yet to understand English or the culture could navigate that system too. This is why we wanted to support the work of New Journey Housing – to help newcomers that need some extra supports in finding and keeping good housing”.
Nikky Agboola has been a client at NJH since 2013 and when asked about how NJH has helped her she says, “Money doesn’t only come from one’s job; getting useful pieces of information is like earning money too”. Ms Agboola’s housing story is one to be admired, as she was able to move from a sub-standard rental with poor heat into subsidized supportive housing (IRCOM House) where she was able to save enough money to put a down payment on a house! She now uses her own home to rent out a unit to newcomers. She speaks about how she wants to ‘pay it forward’ and that is why she is renting out space in her home – to help other newcomers adjust to life in Canada.
Codi Guenther, executive director of New Journey Housing stated, “Housing is very complicated and not knowing the rules can get tenants and even home owners into distress. New Journey Housing aims to provide crucial information to newcomers and to walk with them through their housing journey as they make Winnipeg home”.
New Journey Housing (NJH) is a housing resource centre for newcomers to Canada. NJH is a one-stop-shop for newcomers to Canada that are facing housing-related issues or want to learn more about the various housing systems in Manitoba. Through workshops and one-on-one housing advice, NJH clients can gain support in searching for housing, applying for subsidized housing, learning the rights and responsibilities of both tenants and landlords, learning how to purchase a home, gain knowledge on money management and many other housing-related topics.
From left: Tarek Gomaa, Paul Ash, Azarias Butariho, Habtemicael Beraki, Irene Kinyanjui, Ignance Kalimba