SHIP – Services and Housing in the Province
Two representatives from SHIP will discuss the services offered and assist members in understanding how to navigate the housing needs in our community.
Nicole Abruscato is a registered Social Worker with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW) since 2009, a Certified Community Resource Specialist (CCRS) and holds various certificates in psychosocial rehabilitation, mental health, addictions, trauma informed practice and leadership. She is currently completing the Micro-Credential in Information & Referral Coaching with Inform USA. Nicole has been with Services and Housing in the Province (SHIP) for over 15 years in various positions from student, Intake and Assessment Community Mental Health Counsellor, Supervisor and in early 2022 Manager of the Central Intake & Access Team. Nicole provides wrap-around clinical leadership and navigation support in our community that is person-centered and through an intersecting lens of creativity, advocacy, innovation, inclusivity, hope and compassion.
Sondra Urquhart is a certified Community Resource Specialist (CCRS) since 2014 and holds various certificates in Brief Action Planning, Solution Focused Therapy, Boundary Dynamics, Motivational Interviewing and Trauma Informed Practice. Sondra has been with Services and Housing In the Province (SHIP) for over 11 years as an Intake & Assessment, Community Mental Health Counsellor and has been in the social service sector for over 15 year. Sondra is the lead for the Central Intake & Access Team in supporting, navigating and assessing high support programs across the organization. She also supports the organization in many committees providing navigation and clinical expertise in Ethical Reviews, Intake & Assessment and Accreditation.
In the early 1980s, SHIP emerged as a beacon of hope amid challenging social conditions, initially focused on providing housing for individuals grappling with mental health issues. Spearheaded by the perseverance of the inaugural Executive Director, Nellie Manley, and bolstered by community advocates like CMHA, SHIP’s journey began with a modest townhouse in Mississauga. Parsons Place in Brampton and Hammond House in Mississauga soon followed, marking the organization’s commitment to expanding supportive housing.
Fueling this mission, the Peel Mental Health Housing Coalition brought together SHIP, Salvation Army, ReLink, regional housing providers, and local hospital staff. The Region of Peel’s enduring support since 1984 has played a pivotal role. SHIP officially incorporated as an independent agency in 1992, forging partnerships with community organizations and earning recognition from hospitals and mental health service providers. Embracing equality and client participation, SHIP has been a trailblazer since the passage of the Mental Health Reform Act in 1987, maintaining its person-centered approach and actively enhancing health services and housing support for the communities it serves.