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Nov 24th, 2022

Employee Spotlight: Meet Marie-Andree

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Marie-Andree has worked as a Tenancy Support Worker with OCH for more than five years. She gravitated to the role due to her decades-long career on the front lines in housing and case management.

Before coming to OCH, she worked for the Canadian Mental Health Association in case management and housing. Due to her work with CMHA, Marie-Andree knew a lot about the inner workings of OCH. When a friend told her about an opening at the Corporation, she jumped.

We asked her about her role and what a typical day looks like for her.

“There really is no typical day,” Marie-Andree said.

She starts by checking her voicemails, then reviews security reports and prioritizes any that need action. On Mondays, she plans out her community visits.

She also connects with community partners to ensure support is in place for vulnerable residents. She said some referrals could include the food bank or counselling services.

She said many tenants have complex needs and often need help knowing where to seek the necessary resources.

The OCH Tenancy Support team is made up of 12 staff who have a combined 125 years of experience. Their mantra is to respond, refer and support.

Marie-Andree said she works in as many as 10 communities a week.

What kind of things can a Tenancy Support Worker help with?

  • Preventing housing loss
  • Resolve neighbour conflicts
  • Refer tenants to community supports

When asked what some of the misconceptions about her role are, Marie-Andree said often people don’t know when it’s appropriate to call for TSW support.

“We try to stay out of interpersonal conflicts, such as someone being rude,” she said.

Some other examples she included were complaints about food smells or a loud noise lasting only five minutes. It’s easy to tell Marie-Andree is passionate about her work. She said she likes her co-workers and bouncing ideas off each other. She also enjoys connecting with partners such as Options Bytown and Montfort Renaissance, who help provide solutions.

“The goal is to keep tenants housed and help connect them with supports to help meet their needs,” Marie-Andree said.