Build Together:

Strengthening the Community Housing Sector in Nova Scotia

Build Together I & II

In partnership with the Community Housing Transformation Centre, we are working to engage the community-housing sector in Nova Scotia – to share successes, recognize strengths, address challenges and barriers, identify gaps, and discover new ways of working together for greater collective impact. Ultimately, our goal is to help strengthen the sector. Build Together I (2021) included four rounds of consultation to identify the desired changes needed to strengthen the sector and to build a network of housing providers, housing groups, networks, and coalitions, and other interested stakeholders. An inventory has been developed and will continue to help with communication, coordination and collaboration. Thematic briefs and monthly newsletters were developed and published. A model (link to website) for a Nova Scotia Non-Profit Housing Association was developed and validated as reflecting the way forward.

Build Together II (2022) will advance the formation of a Nova Scotia Non-Profit Housing Association in several ways. Using a diversity, inclusion, equity and decolonization lens, a governance model will be designed. A sustainability plan is being developed that will identify important ways in which the organization can move forward with confidence. Strategic directions and goals expressed during Build Together I and II will be packaged and shared. Non-profit housing providers as well as the informal housing groups, networks and coalitions that work to create housing solutions will convene in October of 2022 to decide on the formation of a Nova Scotia Non-Profit Housing Association.

Project Team

Renée Hébert

Renée Hébert

Community Housing Transformation Centre

The Community Housing Transformation Centre is thrilled to be partnering with StFX Extension’s Build Together: Strengthening the Community Housing Sector in Nova Scotia initiative. Program Manager, Renée Hébert brings 30 years’ experience with the non-profit, charitable sector. Her role on the team will be to collect and share knowledge, learnings, and examples of organizational structures from across the country. Renée is also on the Imagine Canada Standards Council and is fluently bilingual (French/English).

Catherine Irving

Catherine Irving

Coady Institute

Catherine is participating in the consultation design and documentation of the Build Together: Strengthening the Community Housing Sector in Nova Scotia project. Having worked at the Coady International Institute’s Marie Michael Library since 1992, Catherine brings a tremendous breadth and depth of experience to the team related to knowledge creation and mobilization. A published researcher in the field of adult education, she has also taught in Coady’s education programs for over two decades in the areas of research and information literacy. She is interested in the role of libraries and resource centres in supporting community-based learning and action.

Julien Landry

Julien Landry

Coady Institute

As part of the Build Together: Strengthening the Community Housing Sector in Nova Scotia team, Julien supports the project’s engagement strategy. He is thrilled to contribute to a space for collective learning within the community housing sector to advance adequate, safe, and affordable housing in Nova Scotia. At the Coady International Institute, where Julien is Program Teaching Staff, he designs and facilitates educational programs focused on citizen engagement, advocacy, and accountable governance. He brings over 15 years of experience at the intersection of human rights, community development and adult education, both in Canada and internationally.

Pauline MacIntosh

Pauline MacIntosh

Coady Institute

An experienced adult educator and facilitator, Pauline is leading the development of StFX Extension’s Community Housing Program—supporting community-based groups, coalitions, and organizations working to ensure adequate, safe, and affordable housing is available in Nova Scotia for people living on low income. Pauline also leads the Build Together: Strengthening the Community Housing Sector in Nova Scotia project and believes that by working together, we can achieve more better and faster for greater collective impact. Pauline sees considering housing through the lens of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and Agenda 2030 as an  important part of this work.

Nancy O'Regan

Nancy O'Regan

O'Regan Project Services

Nancy keeps trying to retire, but it just won’t stick! In addition to co-facilitating Build Together: Strengthening the Community Housing Sector in Nova Scotia engagement sessions and supporting all aspects of the project, she is a community development facilitator and project manager working and volunteering primarily in Guysborough County. She retired from the Nova Scotia Community College in 2012 after teaching Human Services and serving as a curriculum consultant for 12 years. As a former StFX Extension Fieldworker, working on this project feels like coming home. Nancy also co-chairs the Guysborough County Housing Network.

Kelly B. Schnare

Kelly B. Schnare

Research and Engagement Coordinator – Community Housing Program

A white settler, land-owner starting with the Acadian Expulsion, Kelly supports complexity through relationships and science-based narratives. Research on Volunteer Motivations, Water Budgeting and data visualization, she is trained in environmental science and engineering with a passion for watershed management. Practiced as a group facilitator, classroom educator, and concept designer in community engagement and public literacy, she thrives in dynamic and complex environments for change-theory and climate action.