How is COVID Changing Us?

Feb 22 2022

How is Covid changing us?What a year, 2021, and how COVID is changing us! The Kitchener Festival of Neighbourhoods concluded it 28th season in 2021 with an online Annual Celebration. The Independent Living Centre of Waterloo Region acknowledged the adaptations and activities of the Central Frederick Neighbourhood to keep inclusion front and centre and setting a great example for all of us by hosted virtual craft events. Living Rooms toured Kitchener neighbourhoods, Neighbourhood Exchange happened at A Better Tent City and Auditorium Neighbourhoods - meeting of two worlds! And having fund with the COVID Comeback BINGO made us laugh so hard... take a look at the videos we shared at the Celebration. We continued finding interactive ways to engage and connect - things you and your neighbours have to try in 2022! Give us a shout at

Tenant Protection and Enforcement of Tenants Rights

Feb 10 2022

"In the field of Eviction Prevention in the Cities of Kitchener, Waterloo and Cambridge, we certainly know there is a desperate need for tenant protections. The first protection we provide in our work is educating tenants on their legal rights and responsibilities.  With the current housing crisis in the region, tenants must educate themselves so they are not illegally evicted, taken advantage of or abused. Our most vulnerable community members are 2SLGBTQ+, BIPOC, new comers, immigrants, refugees, seniors and low income," Hollee George, eviction prevention worker at the Social Development Centre Waterloo Region.

With that, there is a need for rent control in order to maintain affordable housing, and rent arrears assistance for working people. The cost of rent is rapidly increasing in the region and there are households that simply don't qualify for existing arrears programs because their incomes are too low to guarantee follow through of potential payment plans. Read more about what solutions are suggested.

2021 Tax Clinic Starts March 2nd

Jan 31 2022

Looking for help getting your taxes done? The Social Development Centre Waterloo Region offers free virtual and in person tax preparation for low income individuals.  This program is through the CRA Community Volunteer Income Tax Program.  Tax program for 2021 tax year starts on March 2, 2022.

For questions, including eligibility or to make an appointment, please read further and contact us at or call 519-579-3800 tax extension.

SDCWR Board Supports Hollee George in Seeking Accountability and Healing

Nov 27 2021

supplied to CBC by Hollee GeorgeSDCWR staff member Hollee George is bringing an action to the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario against the London Health Science Centre. In early November 2020 Hollee underwent a medical procedure in London. In her submission, she describes in detail the “discrimination (she) experienced as a patient at the LHSC during some of the most traumatic and terrifying moments of my life” and her continual frustration by the LHSC in her efforts “to access information, accountability and healing.”

Walking Together Annual Giving Campaign

Walking Together Campaign"Asking for support provides opportunities for both the people who are helped and us who are able to provide the help." Brad Ullner, Board Co-chair. 2022 is a crucial year in setting up the foundation for the years ahead of the Social Development Centre Waterloo Region. Our team, Board, staff, members, associates, community connectors, placement students and voluntneers, have pulled many times their weight and brought many important issues and unheard voices to the forefront of the public debates and policies. 

Housing Lived Expertise Working Group Facilitator

Community Housing  Transformation CentreSocial Development Centre participated in the Kitchener’s Affordable Housing Strategy Advisory Committee in 2020, and is identified as a partner organization to support the implementation of the Housing Strategy. In 2021, we collaborated on the development of the approach and recruitment strategies with the city of Kitchener and now we are ready to launch a pilot project to establish a Lived Expertise Working Group that will work closely with the city staff from different departments responsible for implementation of the actions within Housing for All.

We are recruiting a Lived Expertise Working Group Facilitator for the period January 2022 to June 2023, working 30 hours per week for $24/hour. The facilitation is needed to support the creation of authentic and ethical “third spaces” (as opposed to token spaces) so that community members from underserved and underrepresented groups can contribute within municipal processes. The facilitator will also support the community representatives in learning and networking opportunities to address systemic housing issues and challenges that affect their communities.

Point in Time Count 2021 - Stories and Narratives

Nov 5 2021

Point In Time Count 2021 Stories"There is trust and leadership in homeless communities. It is just that the greater community hasn't accepted it yet." - Stories and Narratives. SDCWR team engaged ten staff and community connectors to support the Point in Time Count, and most importantly, to collect life stories and narratives to complement the quantitative data. Our approach, embedded in lived expertise and relationships built over decades, is grounded in the realization that we still make important decisions based on numbers whereas the qualitative data is left out. Quantitative data has a notoriousness to generalize

28th FON Annual Celebration

Oct 30 2021

28th FON CelebrationCan you believe it! Festival of neighbourhoods is sailing through another challenging and fascination year. Challenge and opportunity are truly two sides of the same coin. Come and share with us: "How is COVID changing us?" and come to learn about our joint project COVID Safe Gathering Spaces. Visit FON website to find out more and RSVP before November 20th at this Zoom link to take part in the virtual celebration... or maybe not fully virtual :)

Reasons to Support ABTC

Oct 25 2021

Lot 42 drawingA Better Tent City is a "giant leap" for unsheltered Homeless in Waterloo Region. It started as a community led initiative in April 2020, and is now an incorporated non for profit. Reasons to continue supporting A Better Tent City:

1.  We help people who are experiencing homelessness and who cannot or will not use shelters and are on waiting lists for affordable housing.

2.  We provide tiny homes that give autonomy, security, heat, and happiness to people and their pets.

3.  We offer a hot, nutritious meal daily and a place to gather for residents to eat and share their lives with one another.  

Financial Empowerment Programs 2021

Oct 25 2021

Resuming tax clinics

Tax season is almost upon us. We appreciate your trust during the pandemic, and we will continue to keep the pace in responding to appointment requests for tax filing both virtually and face to face. We haven't stopped providing the year-round service and brought over 2,5 million to the community in accessed benefits. Currently we are busy recruiting a team of new volunteers to support our existing team. We are recruiting immigrant and refugee individuals with previous financial and accounting backgrounds (see the call to join the training) to make sure as many low-modest income individuals can take advantage of our free financial empowerment service.