An Amazing Day

Director of Programs Bob Pyle with MP-elect Kent Hehr, an Accessible Housing alumni at a recent Gratitude Event.
Director of Programs Bob Pyle with MP-elect Kent Hehr, an Accessible Housing alumni at a recent Gratitude Event.

So, the day has finally arrived, my turn to put some thoughts together for Accessible Housing’s monthly blog. How did it get here so fast?

As a Director of Programs, I spend much of my day working with our program coordinators and funders, monitoring budgets and reporting on outcomes. Our funders are nearly as varied as our clients. Most work with us in a very collaborative way; acknowledging that they are struggling to get “it” right. They want to engage in the hard conversations with us, to actually hear our concerns, and to help make our jobs easier. You might be thinking “How does he get to do all the glory work in the organization?” and I must admit that I find myself asking the same question. I thought I would write my blog post about funders and programming, but then I had a remarkable day connecting with the talented people on the frontlines of homelessness in Calgary.

It started off by sitting with a group of service providers convened by the Calgary Homeless Foundation that meets weekly to review individuals who desperately need access to the homeless serving sector. Hearing stories about the challenges these organizations face as they try to house and maintain housing for some of our city`s most vulnerable citizens is truly inspiring. Around the table were caring individuals from HomeBase, Pathways, the John Howard Society, the Mustard Seed, Keys to Recovery, the SORCe and Calgary Police Service. I watched the group struggle with issues around providing services for their clients to keep them safe; while at the same time working to keep their staff and our neighbourhoods safe. At times, this is no small feat. I left that meeting simply in awe of the work these agencies and the non-profit sector does around the clock in very difficult conditions.

My workday ended, in an amazing fashion, when I attended Horizon Housing’s annual partner event where they gather their peers together and say thank you for helping us do the work we do. Horizon Housing does an incredible job of creating a space for us to connect with each other, in a less formal way. Highlighting their partnership with others and hearing from some of their clients about how this organization and their partners have positively impacted their lives; again leaves me at a loss for words at the tremendous work that is done, around our community. Looking around that room, I was reminded again of the incredibly dedicated individuals who work tirelessly in the non-profit sector. People who genuinely care, not only about the work they do, but also about their colleagues. I feel so blessed that I get to work alongside so many amazing people and organizations towards transforming Calgary.