____Posted Thursday June 8 2017 ____

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Quality of Life

Annual Community Services report frames Regional successes through a quality of life lens

Waterloo Region – Community Services is starting to measure its success by how well the Regional department helps people improve their overall quality of life.

“We used to report on statistics. But those numbers don’t say much about the impact on a person’s life,” said Commissioner Douglas Bartholomew-Saunders. “If we helped pay an overdue utility bill, did that help someone keep their home, their stability?”

Now, each division in Community Services is working together to show the impact its programs and services have on a citizen’s overall quality of life.

“We help people meet their basic needs,” said Bartholomew-Saunders. “But we also help improve their health, level of independence, and their relationships.”

Here are some highlights from the Community Services 2016 annual report:

• 2,178 families could work or further their education because the Region helped cover the cost of child care.

• 100 people who previously struggled with homelessness showed an improved quality of life with the help of Region-funded rent assistance.

• People who don’t receive health care benefits accessed benefits like dental care and hearing aids over 16,000 times through Region and provincial funding.

• The employment program YouthForce helped 28 teens and young adults make a difference in their community housing neighbourhoods and for themselves.

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