Outreach and support
welcoming | evaluating | guiding | referring | advising

Homelessness is a complex phenomenon. It can involve mental and physical health issues, addiction, being intellectually challenged, dependence, and loneliness. We can count on a professionally trained community outreach team to guide and provide tools for our clients in their process of social reintegration from the moment they cross the threshold of the Accueil Bonneau.

A shared approach based on motivational interviewing

Wishing to develop an actualized and shared way-of-doing by all employees, Accueil Bonneau is training to a counseling approach named motivational interviewing. MI is a goal-oriented, client-centered counseling style for eliciting behavior change by helping clients to explore and resolve ambivalence. Compared with non-directive counseling, it's more focused and goal-directed. It departs from traditional Rogerian client-centered therapy through this use of direction, in which therapists attempt to influence clients to consider making changes, rather than non-directively explore themselves. The examination and resolution of ambivalence is a central purpose, and the counselor is intentionally directive in pursuing this goal.

You cannot teach a person anything, you can only find it within him/her.
— Galilée

Our philosophy of outreach

Our philosophy of outreach arises from our mission and other considerations that have recently been specified and are associated with it. This philosophy of outreach is shared by everyone who works at the Accueil Bonneau. It guides and determines our community work, and it is the most easy to integrate when there is direct and frequent contact with the clientele. For those who do not have this kind of contact, it is the responsibility of the Director and the heads of the service divisions to convey it to the staff so that they can assimilate this philosophy and feel that they belong to this individual and collective commitment.

Our understanding of the situation and problems of the people who visit us

The people who visit us either have no place of lodging or are having difficulties in maintaining lodging. As well, they are very poor, and that situation has made them homeless or is threatening to do so.

Homelessness is a complex phenomenon because many problems are associated with it, either as causes, symptoms, or effects. These problems are related to health (e.g. infections, psychological distress, depression, mental illness, misuse of medication, addiction, compulsive gambling, and failure to use or follow up on medical treatment); loss of social recognition and the feeling of belonging (loss of family or friends, loneliness, marginalization, violence, abuse, and exclusion); trouble with the police and the legal system (crimes, misdemeanours, imprisonment); as well as difficulty in homeless people’s taking charge of their behaviour and daily life (e.g. lack of hygiene, risky behaviours, indebtedness, malnutrition). The combination of these problems gives rise to a vicious circle that can multiply them and aggravate the situation in the absence of specialized help.

The people whom we help are often wounded by life. They bear very great suffering even if sometimes they appear to be doing nothing more than trying to preserve a minimum of dignity. Their absence or lack of motivation may be an expression of their fear of change or a loss of hope that their existence could be better. The problems someone is experiencing must not be an obstacle to welcoming that person.

For information: Nicolas Pagot | pagotn@accueilbonneau.com | 514.845.3906 #250