Mental Health, Diversity, and Homelessness - A resource for High School Students

"Prejudices, it is well known, are most difficult to eradicate from the heart whose soil has never been loosened or fertilized by education." ~~ Charlotte Bronte

When you hear the word "homeless", what comes to mind?

Perhaps you picture a dirty and ragged old man smelling of alcohol. Maybe you think of "crazy" people talking to themselves or lazy "bums" wasting their days begging for money rather than trying to find work.

"The less you know, the more you believe." ~~ U2's Bono

These are just some of the misconceptions many Canadians have about individuals who are homeless. What do you believe? How well do you know your facts?

"The more we understand, the less fear and stigma we will have, and the easier it will be for people suffering to get help. Together we can make a difference, together we can change attitudes, together we can mend the lives that have been broken." ~~ Daniel Alfredsson, Captain of NHL team the Ottawa Senators

Welcome to the Mental Health, Diversity, and Homelessness project's website. This website was created by a group of Canadian researchers devoted to educating Canadians about the issues of mental health, diversity and homelessness.

We've all heard dozen of different "facts" about individuals who are homeless and/or mentally ill; we've probably all believed several at some point. However, many of these "facts" are nothing more than myths driven by stereotypes and prejudice.

"Let us overthrow the totems, break the taboos. Or better, let us consider them cancelled. Coldly, let us be intelligent." ~~ Pierre Elliot Trudeau, former Prime Minister

Our goal is to dispel false beliefs and stereotypes by providing you with an abundance of facts about mental health and homelessness. Download one of our fact sheets or look at our definitions page. Teachers should feel welcome to use these resources in their classrooms. Help us improve the lives of numerous Canadians by educating yourself and others on these important issues.

"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." ~~ Nelson Mandela