Far too many Toronto residents are experiencing homelessness or extreme housing precarity, due mainly to a chronic shortage of affordable housing options, as well as ineffectual social supports to meet complex needs. Worse still, the high needs of homeless adults are being further compounded by age-related illnesses and health conditions.
Homes First is working towards closing these gaps and helping residents maintain their housing by providing a program that delivers high supports and that would also allow individuals to age in place.
Our agency has developed a support model that includes medical/psychiatric services, medication monitoring, assistance with maintaining personal hygiene and clean-living spaces, financial management, navigating the criminal justice system, and a host of additional age-specific supports.
We’re continuously looking for great people to join us in our fight for those experiencing homelessness in Toronto. If you think our missions and values align, click on the button below to see and apply for open positions. We can’t wait to meet you!
Patricia has worked in the social housing sector for more than twenty years. All of her career choices have had the connecting theme of the support of individual and group empowerment.
Patricia has been the senior leader at Homes First for more than fifteen years. Homes First Society develops and provides affordable, stable housing and support services to break the cycle of homelessness for people with the fewest housing options throughout the City of Toronto. Homes First is financially viable, well managed, and greatly respected by the City of Toronto and other funders. It is poised for growth and positioned well for the future.
Jamie has worked in the housing and homelessness sector for over 20 years. Jamie’s life work is based on the belief that everyone needs a home. Over the years he has worked on the front lines as a shelter worker, a housing worker, and a case support worker. Additionally, he spent time as a Housing and Shelter supervisor, manager and as the Director of Housing and Shelters.
His work has focused on providing shelter, housing, and support services to people who are most vulnerable, most marginalized and have the fewest housing options. He is currently dedicated to developing a variety of Housing programs specifically designed to meet the needs of Toronto’s chronic homeless population.
Caroline has been active within the Human Resources field for over 25 years, specializing in business operations for non-profits. Caroline joined Homes First 20 years ago and looks forward to continuing to assist the growth of existing staff and the organization alike.
Justin Ryan is the Director of Property Management operation at Homes First, managing 14 properties from low rise to high rise as well as seven 24-hour emergency shelters and three hotel shelter programs in the City of Toronto. He has 25 years of extensive experience in the property development and property management field. Over his past 10 years with Homes First, Justin’s management and organization of the maintenance programs and contracts has significantly reduced the organization’s operating costs and has helped foster a healthier environment for residents and employees. His ability to understand and manage residents with extreme complex issues and pairing that with design and development has provided safer environments. Projects he has managed in this time include four large scale elevator modernizations, a 57-thousand square foot floor resurfacing project, a 64 unit building hydro vault replacement, as well as an eight-unit building addition.
Justin has a wealth of experience in property management activities in both shelter and housing program models. He also has lengthy experience in the management of both non-owned and owned building facilities management (preventative maintenance).
With over 20 years of experience in housing and homelessness, Gary’s journey from Glasgow to Toronto fuels his passion for making a difference.
Having worked in social housing in Scotland’s underprivileged areas, Gary’s commitment to helping those in need led him to Homes First in 2018. He’s focused on expanding our supportive housing initiatives, driven by a vision of a future where everyone has a safe place to call home.
Gary’s dedication and experience are invaluable as we work towards our mission of creating lasting change in the lives of the homeless community.
Dana Hansen has over six years of fundraising and management experience within the Canadian non-profit sector, dedicating her time to causes close to her heart. Having joined the Homes First organization almost 3 years ago, Dana launched the agency’s inaugural Capital Campaign, Homefull Toronto and continues to provide strategic direction for all fund development related initiatives.
Dana is passionate about helping others and making a lasting difference in the lives of our city’s most vulnerable populations. As Director of Fundraising and Development, Dana is committed to a holistic approach to elevating Homes First’s efforts to address chronic homelessness in Toronto. She believes that together, we can build a Homefull Toronto and invites all interested in effecting positive change to join her.
Michael Potvin MSW., PhD Candidate, is a Director of Client Services with Homes First and oversees a department responsible for providing Housing First case management programs, harm reduction and health services, and oversees evaluations and research. Michael’s work focuses on implementing Evidence Base Practices (EBP) in homeless services, evaluations, and using data to monitor and inform responsive programming to better serve client’s needs.
Michael Potvin holds a Master of Social Work degree from University of Toronto and is completing his PhD at McMaster University. Michael’s training, research, and education centre around homelessness, Housing First, trauma, psychosis, internalized stigma and oppression and EBP interventions in the homeless sector such as Critical Time Intervention (CTI).
Necole has been active in the housing sector of over 17 years, having joined Homes First in 2007. Necole’s focus as the Assistant Director of Property Management is optimize Homes First’s opening of new programs, supporting property acquisitions, and capital projects. Supporting residents’ goals in both shelter and housing remain Necole’s top priority and looks forward to any opportunity to work directly with our residents.
Lacey has worked with Homes First since 2020, working in various roles including as a manager of two of our Hotel shelters. Lacey has a background in supportive housing and harm reduction and is currently dedicated to developing supports and programs to serve Toronto’s unhoused population.