Core Neighbourhood Priorities as Seen by our New Ward 2 Councillor—Hilary Gough

“You plant the seed, you may not see the bloom, but you helped plant that seed for their future.” – Laverne

Laverne has been an essential part of Quint since it was created. She is a founding board member of Quint, and one of the reasons the organization has the pulse and impact it does today.

As a lifelong resident of Pleasant Hill and many years of community organizing in the core neighbourhoods,  Laverne’s leadership was an instrumental part of the vision that led to the formation of Quint. As a member of the founding Board, Laverne helped ensure that the foundation of Quint was solid with a clear strategic plan and policies that have shaped the organization as it developed in the early years.

What are your priorities as Councillor for Ward 2 and especially the core neighbourhoods?

In terms of housing, over the last 10 years, the percentage of Saskatoon residents living in unacceptable or unaffordable housing has grown. Ward 2 residents need:

  • For the city to prioritize the use of Affordable Housing reserve funds to address this gap in Ward 2 neighbourhoods, and
  • Investment in high quality, affordable housing that allows residents to choose to stay and thrive in the area.

Will you work with other sectors to adopt and implement affordable (social) and accessible rental housing development regulations, development incentives, and quotas and funding, in order provide equitable growth and opportunities for all in Saskatoon?

Yes. Existing efforts in this area have moved the dial on accessible ownership, and quotas are being met. However, the rising rate of residents in core housing need indicates that these efforts are not enough. More must be done to ensure that affordable and accessible high quality rentals area available in areas where they are needed most.

Do you support public policy that works to achieve the goal of having adequate income and access to a broad range of healthy employment opportunities that will make Saskatoon a healthy city?

Yes. The City of Saskatoon has the opportunity to be model employer and to set examples for other employers. Successful businesses know that when employees are healthy and well, businesses and communities thrive.

Opportunities for all is another priority, and this means:

  • Partnerships to support daytime programming & opportunities for youth
  • Support for not-for-profit organizations to serve those facing barriers in an integrated way

And finally, our 8 neighbourhoods do not contain any supermarkets.

Ward 2 residents need a viable supermarket. Until that is in place, supports are needed for efforts that bring healthy and affordable food into the area.

As the organization continued to grow, Laverne’s position evolved into the  Director of Operations but she continued to oversee and guide the affordable housing program. She is also one of our main social function organizers ensuring that we maintain a strong and cohesive staff team/family, something that she prides herself on. She has worked hard to make sure staff feel included, heard and part of the decision making process within the organization.

Laverne also played a large role in organizing Quint’s community events, what she calls “the fun work”. This included launching and planning the annual Our Core Communities Shine events, numerous community BBQ’s, and anniversary celebrations.

Laverne’s impact is throughout all aspects of Quint’s programming and practices. Her legacy will be that of dedication, compassion, and perseverance, always fighting for the good of her community and the people in it. On behalf of the Quint staff, board of directors and the community at large, Laverne we are so thankful for your leadership and vision to bring Quint to reality. Your contributions will continue to transcend the 26 years you have committed to our west side core communities and beyond.

Happy Retirement!