No sermon today as we welcomed Nadine Green and Laura Hamilton to talk with us about A Better Tent City.
Nadine has been instrumental in setting up ABTC, lives in one of the tiny homes and is the On-Site Supervisor and Site Coordinator. Parkminster has a strong connection with A Better Tent City. Laura Hamilton, a Parkminster member, prepares meals and is the coordinator for the volunteers who provide the daily meals. Parkminster also has a group of regular volunteers who provide desserts bi-monthly and there is a bi-monthly collection of juice boxes and granola bars.
To learn more about homelessness and A Better Tent City please click on this link to an excellent video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1hhRe1HHkfU&ab_channel=AlairHomes
ABOUT OUR GUEST SPEAKERS…
Nadine Green, Site Coordinator, A Better Tent City
Nadine has experienced homelessness; she sees opportunity in adversity and works tirelessly to support those who have fallen through the cracks. Nadine never walks away from a challenge. For five years, Nadine sheltered and cared for people experiencing homelessness in her downtown Kitchener convenience store until she was evicted for doing so in January 2020. She then began to care for the unsheltered folks who could no longer seek shelter in her store with nightly visits to bring them food, tents and blankets. In April 2020 Ron Doyle invited Nadine to help to establish and live in A Better Tent City. Nadine continues to live on site and manage life at ABTC. She also continues to go out at night to care for hundreds of people in our community who remain unsheltered and has organized and trained a team of volunteers to do this work when she cannot.
Nadine is the site coordinator and jack-of-all-trades at A Better Tent City. She brings people to the site who need shelter, she ushers residents to appointments and has set the general rules and tone for the community. Basically, Nadine manages and supports life at ABTC. Nadine is the most gentle, generous, and humble of souls, and is respected in all her roles: as community builder, advocate and den mother. She resolves disputes among ABTC residents with unconditional love, the same love that propels her as she ventures out at night to bring food, blankets, tents and compassion to those who continue to live on the streets or in unsanctioned encampments. She always gives a smile and a hug, and will share her sage advice and uplifting stories with those who need these the most. Nadine is an extraordinary woman who selflessly volunteers her time to serve her community. She is a woman who not only finds beauty in giving back, she also finds and shares love.
Laura Hamilton – Director
Laura has worked in community and workforce development for the federal and provincial governments for over forty years. Laura serves on the board of the Social Development Centre Waterloo Region and is a founding member of both Union Sustainable Development Co-op and the Community Kitchen Co-operative of Kitchener Waterloo. In 2013 Laura, along with three friends formed Divest Waterloo, a grassroots organization committed to climate justice that works in solidarity with local and national Indigenous land defenders to create awareness and action on climate change. Over the last twenty years, Laura has been an active member of Kitchener Food Not Bombs, a collective that recovers and publicly shares food that would otherwise be discarded as a way of protesting war and poverty. Laura helped to establish A Better Tent City and continues to support ABTC operations as a founding director.