after homelessness… Image

back to Past Work

3 days of community dialogues - in partnership with the after homelessness… theatre project - to enrich a Community Action Report for government and social service agencies.

Theatre Making Policy. Speak out and be heard.

Firehall Arts Centre
280 East Cordova St, Vancouver
Nov 24, 25 and 26, 2009

All events are FREE
1:30pm each day

This is an invitation to discuss what can be done, not what has or has not been done.

The Panels ↓ :: The Panelists ↓ :: The Moderators ↓

T he Community Dialogue Sessions are part of the after homelessness… project which includes performances of the interactive play at the Firehall Arts Centre in Vancouver and at the Holy Trinity Cathedral in New Westminster, as well as a photography exhibition at Gallery Gachet.

The hope for these three days of panel and community discussions is to open the space for a true dialogue on these topics; to work through any blockages that stop us from moving forward on the issues in a healthy way. The sessions will focus on location, supports and services and financing, respectively.

This will not be a series of lectures; the panelists are here to share their experience and knowledge with the topics, not to provide set answers. This will be a conversation between the panelists and the public, and the solutions will be sought within the conversation.

Headlines has received written agreements from the Mental Health Commission of Canada, BC Housing, the City of Vancouver, the Greater Vancouver Regional Steering Committee on Homelessness, RainCity Housing and Coast Mental Health to use the after homelessness… project and the resulting Community Action Report as part of their respective research for national, provincial, regional and local strategies on mental health and homelessness.

The Community Action Report will distill the suggestions from the Community Dialogues and the interactive forums at each performance of the play into policy suggestions. This legislative theatre process gives the homeless community and the general public a creative venue to use theatre to help create policy.

Headlines is excited to present this series of Community Dialogue Sessions on affordable and safe housing and necessary services, and would like to thank all panelists and facilitators for presenting their perspectives on the issues.

3 Community Dialogues Sessions:

Location, location, locationIs it viable to create shelters and/or housing in the communities in which homeless people are residing? If so, how? If not, why?

Moderator: Kathryn Gretsinger, Journalist

Shirley Chan, Executive Director,
Building Opportunities with Business
Dr. Kerry Jang,Councillor, City of Vancouver and Professor, Dept of Psychiatry, UBC
Anne Kloppenborg, Former City Planner,
City of Vancouver




What makes a home a "home"?Beyond bricks and mortar, what are the essential ingredients of safe, appropriate housing?

Moderator: David Diamond, Artistic Director,
Headlines Theatre

Liz Evans, Executive Director,
PHS Community Services Society
Sandra Pronteau, Community Activist
Mark Smith, Executive Director, RainCity Housing and Support Society




The 5 Ws of MoneyHow do we finance safe, appropriate housing for people who have been homeless?

Moderator: Charlie Smith, Editor, Georgia Straight

Craig Crawford, Vice-President of Development Services, BC Housing
Jill Davidson, Assistant Director, Housing Policy, City of Vancouver
Catharine Hume, Vancouver Site Coordinator,
At Home/Chez Soi Project, Mental Health Commission of Canada
Jaimie McEvoy, Director of the Hospitality Project and New Westminster City Councillor


Our Moderators


→ Kathryn Gretsinger

Kathryn Gretsinger is a journalist and journalism professor. She currently teaches at the University of British Columbia and at Langara College. For the past 20 years, Kathryn has contributed her stories, skills and research at CBC Radio. She continues to work both on air and off for the public broadcaster.


→ David Diamond

Since 1981 David has directed over 380 community specific theatre projects on issues such as racism, gender roles and globalization, among others. He is the originator of Headlines' THEATRE FOR LIVING workshops, which have evolved from the Brazilian Theatre of the Oppressed. He has directed workshops throughout Canada, the USA, Europe, Namibia, New Zealand and Singapore. He has also been involved in the writing and/or directing of all of Headlines' main stage plays.


→ Charlie Smith

Charlie Smith has worked in newspapers, magazines, radio, and television for more than 20 years. He started as a talk-show producer in private radio before becoming a news researcher at CBC television. Later, he worked as a researcher and writer at CBC radio and also did some TV news reporting. He joined the Georgia Straight as news editor in 1994, and became editor in 2005. He also taught college-level journalism for seven years. He has written many stories over the years about housing and homelessness.



We want to thank our Community Partner, SPARC BC (Jim Sands) and our Community Working Group for their support of this project:
Jeff Brooks • Rosemary Collins • Judy Graves • Nancy Hall • Jaimie McEvoy • Laura Stannard