A New Beginning: London Community Chaplaincy Brings Hope and Imagination to Those Living in Poverty

May. 29, 2013

For families and individuals living in the housing owned by London Middlesex Housing Corporation, poverty is a reality that they must face every day. The effects of poverty are far reaching and may include mental health issues, addictions and food insecurity to name a few. Not to mention that these effects are often impacted by challenges associated with language and cultural differences, as many of these individuals and families are immigrants. The result is marginalization, stigma and a lack of ability to engage with the surrounding community.

Concerned about the well being of marginalized families in our community, Limberlost and Southdale chaplaincies believed that by pooling their resources and strengths, they could drive change, reducing poverty in the community. Thanks to a $30,000 grant from London Community Foundation, this merger was made possible and the London Community Chaplaincy was born. This new amalgamated organization will improve service delivery and facilitate the expansion of new programs while consolidating existing programs to the benefit of children and families who live in nearby communities.

Through our relationship building with community members, we hope to mentor and help individuals work towards achievable goals for themselves that will improve their food and income security. The London Community Chaplaincy will have staff and programs who will help connect community members with resources in the broader community to improve their circumstances.” - Katie Ballagh-Steeper, Chaplain, London Community Chaplaincy

The programs and services available at the London Community Chaplaincy are sustainable and proactive as they emphasize prevention. Instead of dealing with the result of families and individuals living in chronic poverty, trying to remediate its effects, the program works to address these issues before they become irreparable. Investing in families and their children with things like strong public education or assistance with accessing healthy food in a sustainable way, not only addresses the need for basic necessities but also the human gap in building healthy relationships and mentoring community members.

The hope is that this work will inspire imagination- imagination for possibilities beyond the poverty families find themselves in.”- Katie Ballagh-Steeper, Chaplain, London Community Chaplaincy