17yr mom & 3wk baby have to leave apt for nite for spraying/bed bugs. Child welfare refuses to help with motel. Will have to sleep in ravine
— Mark Cherrington (@MarkCherrington) August 7, 2012
I don’t know how you respond to that tweet. Mark is a court worker in Edmonton and posts things like this all of the time. Most of them are heartbreaking and they happen in all cities, not just Edmonton. The solution to many of the issues is money. Money so that a 17 year old mom and 3 week old baby don’t have to sleep in a ravine. Money for bug spray, money for food, money for clothes. Where does that money come from? In an ideal Canadian world, the government would provide it. In reality they don’t.
I have long wonder why 25-30 churches can’t come together and donate $1000 each annually for a fund that is administrated by them for purposes like this. Allow workers like Mark to access a part of it 24 hours a day (emergencies don’t always happen during office hours), provide financial accountability, and report back to the churches on how the money was spent. It wouldn’t be that hard to do and it would allow churches to stand in the gap when everything else fails. $25,000 a year to spend on situations where there is no other support would make a massive difference. It would be hard to say no to some of the requests and you would need both strong and flexible boundaries but if done right, it could make an incredible difference for both the recipients and the funding groups.