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Speaker, Vikki Reynolds headlines Homelessness Action Week in Nelson

Keynote speaker Vikki Reynolds, PhD, RCC is will be giving a public presentation: Homelessness, Trauma and Suffering: Communities Responding with Heart at 7 p.m., October 12th at the United Church.

The Nelson Committee on Homelessness (NCOH) is bringing in a sought-after speaker, Vikki Reynolds, PhD, RCC to give a public presentation exploring the links between trauma and homelessness as part of this year’s Homelessness Action Week (HAW) in Nelson said Ann Harvey Community Coordinator for Nelson Committee on Homelessness (NCOH) in a media release.

Reynolds, described as “dynamic” and “insightful” works internationally as a consultant and guest speaker, with a background as a clinical counsellor, supervisor, and adjunct professor. 

Her work has an important focus on trauma and seeks to “bridge the worlds of therapy and social justice.”

“We noticed a number of reports coming back to us during our April 2016 Point in Time Homeless Count in Nelson that recounted stories of trauma in people’s lives,” said Harvey.

 “We wanted to further explore and shed a bit of light on this theme – both with frontline service providers in town and with our community.”

Harvey said Todd Kettner, a psychologist with School District 8, is the Honourary Chair of this year’s Homelessness Action Week.

“In my practice as a psychologist over the years I’ve seen the impact that trauma has on people’s lives," Kettner said.

"Early childhood trauma can affect brain development and how we grow and interact as individuals.  Trauma at any time in life can set up significant barriers in people’s ability to engage in family and community or to be employed.” 

Kettner said whether it is youth and children suffering abuse, women fleeing violence, people with indigenous ancestry still suffering the legacy of residential schools, people who are LGBTQ2+ or struggling with gender identity, men who have suffered abuse or veterans returned from war or other conflicts – many have suffered significant trauma that continues to impact their lives.

"Some have mental health and substance use issues arising from this,” he adds.

Reynolds will be giving a public presentation: Homelessness, Trauma and Suffering: Communities Responding with Heart at 7 p.m., Wednesday, October 12th at the United Church.  

She will also be leading a day-long workshop for service providers on Thursday October 13th exploring how trauma impacts not only the victims but the service providers who work with them, and their organizations. 

Calendar Launch and Photo Exhibit a HAW Advance Event

Homelessness Action Week is partnering with the Nelson United Church (602 Silica St.) for an Advance Event on Sunday, October 2nd when the Profiles in Courage Calendar and Photo Exhibit will launch at 6 p.m., following a potluck supper. 

Local citizens are profiled in words and photos – with stories from single moms, seniors, working poor, artists and homeless people who find the courage every day to continue their lives in the face of challenges to make ends meet on low or little income.

Our Daily Bread of Kootenay Christian Fellowship (520 Falls St.) will officially kick off Homelessness Action Week with a free, fantastic, no-barriers Thanksgiving Dinner on Thanksgiving Day, Monday, October 10th.  Doors open at 4:45 pm.

Everyone is welcome to all events, and all public events are free. For more information contact NCOH at 250-352-6011 or ncoh@nelsoncares.ca.