It is with great sadness that the IRCGM team learned of the passing of Mr. Pierre Tessier, Head of Division—Social Development, Cultural, Recreational and Sports Services of the City of Laval.      It is thanks to the determination of Mr. Tessier and his team that we were able to implement 211 in Laval, which was the very first Greater Montréal municipality to acquire this service that helps citizens with their search for free or low-cost services. His commitment, enthusiasm and willingness to help Laval citizens in need, as well as, his respect for community organizations have moved us all. Our deepest condolences go out to his family, colleagues and loved ones.   The social realities of youth and adults in difficulty may sometimes differ from an urban to a rural setting. However, there are no doubts as to the importance of helping everyone. For 25 years, L’ Aiguillage has been helping people get through difficult situations in the Vaudreuil-Soulanges area.L’ Aiguillage: History   The organization was founded in 1993 by two volunteers involved in the field. Aware of the marginalization of youth, they decided to set up L’ Aiguillage to help them.   Local services:   L’ Aiguillage offers three types of help: street outreach, emergency shelter and residential stability with follow-up.   The street outreach workers, the emergency shelter and the residential stability and follow-up counsellors are available for people going through various difficult situations. Several services are offered: Welcome and emergency referrals; Counselling; Emergency shelter for 24 hours, including meals; Emergency food and clothing; Counselling for runaway or suicidal youth; Regional concertation on homelessness.   L’ Aiguillage offers emergency shelter for young adults 18 and over, as well as, other services for all ages.   The L’ Aiguillage services cover the Vaudreuil-Soulanges area, the MRC du Haut Saint-Laurent and the MRC de Beauharnois-Salaberry.   Address:   536, rue Chicoine Vaudreuil-Dorion (Québec) J7V 7E4   To contact the team: Management: 450-218-6418 direction@aiguillage.ca (Monday to Friday: 9:00 am to 4:30 pm)   Emergency shelter coordinator: 450-218-6418 hebergement@aiguillage.ca (24/7)   Residential stability with follow-up: 1-844-782-5487 sra@aiguillage.ca   Street outreach: 1-877-265-8460 rue@aiguillage.ca (Monday 10:00 am to Friday at midnight)              The Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal, the Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal and Centraide of Greater Montreal launched the 211 service today that is now available on the metropolitan area.       For immediate release 211: A service for citizens now available on the Greater Montréal territory Montréal, April 26, 2018 — The Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal, the Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal and Centraide of Greater Montreal launched the 211 service today that is now available on the metropolitan area. “The citizens of Greater Montréal had already access to the 211qc.ca website since January 2018. The 211 phone line is now in service. This complete deployment of the 211 service in the Greater Montréal area is an important step, notably with the financial contribution of the 82 municipalities of the CMM. Each citizen of the metropolitan region needing help may now obtain free and trustworthy information and references on community resources. By contributing together to the implementation of the 211 service, we are bearing witness to our social solidarity and the inclusiveness of Greater Montréal,” declared Mrs. Valérie Plante, Mayor of Montréal and President of the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal. To Mrs. Pierrette Gagné, Executive Director of the Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal, the organization accredited with deploying and operating 211, this is a very happy occasion. “A true hub of information and social referral for 61 years, IRCGM and its team can finally witness the culmination of this project which began many years ago. Thanks to our determination and resilience, we have now concretely met our objective of making our info-referral service even more accessible with an easy-to-remember telephone number and a user-friendly Web site that enables anyone at any time to search for and find the resource necessary for them.” Mrs. Gagné wishes to thank the partners of 211 Greater Montréal for their contribution: Centraide of Greater Montréal, the Ministère de la Famille du Québec and the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal. “Your support to this project made its implementation possible and we can only thank you, once again, for your constant commitment,” concluded Mrs. Gagné. Mrs. Lili-Anna Pereša, President and Executive Director of Centraide Greater Montréal and IRCGM partner in the 211 deployment from the very beginning, believes that “the importance of 211 for citizens, as well as, social and community organizations is undeniable. Food, housing or fighting isolation among seniors, just to name a few issues, are important needs in the metropolitan area. 211 has the tools on hand to easily help people break the cycle of poverty and social exclusion by guiding them towards appropriate resources”. In Québec, 211 has been implemented for almost ten years in Capitale-Nationale, the Chaudière-Appalaches region and MRC La Haute-Yamaska. In Greater Montréal, the City of Laval was the first municipality to implement 211 in 2016, followed by MRC de L’Assomption and MRC Thérèse-De-Blainville in 2017. MRC de Vaudreuil-Soulanges also implemented 211 in December 2017. Other Montérégie municipalities will join the ranks by the end of 2018, which will mean that more than 50% of Québec’s population will have access to this essential service. It is operational in many large Canadian cities. It was in 2001 that InformCanada, the Canadian coalition of information and referral centres, and Centraide/United Way Canada were granted, by the CRTC, the rights to retain the 211 telephone number for Canadian community information and referral centres. InformCanada and Centraide/United Way have since been responsible for granting 211 licences, as well as establishing quality standards. The Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal The Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal (CMM) is a planning, coordinating and funding organization created in 2001 that brings together 82 municipalities, totalling close to 4 million people spread over more than 4,360 km2. CMM carries out responsibilities with regards to land development, economic development, social housing, public transportation, environment, as well as, municipal services, equipment, infrastructure and activities. The Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal The Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal offer bilingual social and community information and referrals to Greater Montréal citizens and counsellors, either by telephone, online or through printed directories. It also manages the 211 service, the Referral Helpline for Seniors, two support, information and referral helplines: Drugs: Help and Referral and Gambling: Help and Referral, as well as, the TeleCounseling program for compulsive gamblers. Centraide of Greater Montreal Centraide of Greater Montréal is active within the territories of Laval, Montréal and the South Shore. Nearly 57,000 volunteers are involved within some 350 organizations it supports and 22,000 volunteers devote their time to organizing its annual campaign. In Québec, Centraide is present in 18 regions and receives support from companies, private, public and para-public institutions, as well as, unions. The funds raised are locally distributed to break the cycle of poverty and social exclusion.   Sources : Marie-Claude Forget, Conseillère en communications et consultations publiques, Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal, Phone: 514 350-2555 Marie Vaillant, Director of Communications, Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal, Work: (514) 527-1388 ext. 215, Phone: 514 889-9535 marie.vaillant@info-reference.qc.ca Annick Gagnon, Public Relations Advisor, Centraide of Greater Montreal, Phone: 514 288-1261, ext. 242 gagnona@centraide-mtl.org, centraide-mtl.org   We are celebrating #211Day today. An important day, highlighting the fact that the complete 211 service will be available in April 2018 for all citizens of Greater Montréal.   Press release For immediate broadcast                         211 Day takes on its full meaning in Greater Montréal in 2018!   Montréal, February 11th, 2018—« In light of 211's full implementation in the 94 municipalities of Greater Montréal, it is with great enthusiasm that we celebrate 211 Day this year. We encourage people to use this service which helps thousands of people in Québec like it does the rest of Canada. » states Mrs. Pierrette Gagné, Executive Director of the Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal (IRCGM) and 211 manager. « To IRCGM, the month of April will be very special since the full 211 service (the 2-1-1 telephone and the www.211qc.ca web site services) will be made available to all Greater Montréal citizens, namely in every Communauté Métropolitaine de Montréal municipality. » she added. We remind you that 211 is an easy to remember telephone number (2-1-1) that enables citizens with social needs (food assistance, housing, transportation, accompaniment, training, job search, support for seniors and families, immigrant integration etc.) to telephone the info-referral counsellors of the Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal to obtain information on social and public organizations able to help them. Combined with the www.211qc.ca web site, where 5000 Greater Montréal social and community organizations are catalogued and continuously updated, the 211 service is a social lever in the fight against poverty and social exclusion. It enables people to quickly access the resources that they need and to find solutions to difficult situations. It is a local service that further helps people find their ability to act upon their situations, improve their living conditions and thus, improve the social fabric of the community. As for Mrs. Lili-Anna Pereša, President and Executive Director of Centraide of Greater Montréal and 211 partner, she states that « the 211 service will not only help the population but also, the counselors from greater metropolitan area community organizations and the health and social services network to easily direct people towards local appropriate resources. It will also ensure a better match between citizens and available resources. » « After having first been implemented in Laval, the MRC de L'Assomption and the MRC Thérèse-De Blainville, 211's arrival on the Greater Montréal territory is the fruit of considerable efforts and concerted action with the 211 partners: Centraide of Greater Montréal, the Ministère de la famille du Québec, the Communauté Métropolitaine de Montréal, the City of Laval, as well as, representatives from the MRC de L'Assomption, MRC Thérèse-De Blainville and the MRC de Vaudreuil-Soulanges », pointed out Mrs. Pierrette Gagné. Other Montérégie municipalities will join the ranks in 2018, which will mean that more than 62% of Québec's population will have access to this essential service.  For some history: It was in 2001 that InformCanada, which groups the Canadian information and referral centres, as well as, Centraide/United way, obtained authorization from the CRTC to reserve the 211 telephone number for Canadian I & R community centres. InformCanada and Centraide have since been responsible for granting 211 licences and quality control. In Québec, 211 covers the areas of Capitale-Nationale, Chaudière-Appalaches and Haute-Yamaska. The 211 Québec-Régions will celebrate its 10th anniversary in the spring of 2018.   The Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal The Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal offers bilingual social and community information and referrals to citizens and counsellors, either by telephone, online or through printed directories. It also manages the 211 service, the Referral Helpline for Seniors, as well as, two specialized support, information and referral helplines: Drugs: Help and Referral and Gambling: Help and Referral, as well as, the TeleCounselling program for compulsive gamblers.   Centraide of Greater Montréal Centraide of Greater Montréal is active within the territories of Laval, Montréal and the South Shore. Nearly 57 000 volunteers are involved within some 350 organizations it supports and 22 000 volunteers devote their time to organizing its annual campaign. In Québec, Centraide is present in 18 areas and receives support from companies, private, public and para-public institutions, as well as, unions. The funds raised are locally distributed in order to break the cycle of poverty and social exclusion.   Source :   Marie Vaillant Director of Communications Information and Referral Centre of Greater Montréal marie.vaillant@info-reference.qc.ca Telephone : (514) 527-1388, ext. 215 Cellular : (514) 889-9535   Annick Gagnon Public Relations Advisor Centraide of Greater Montréal Telephone : (514) 288-1261, ext. 242 gagnona@centraide-mtl.org centraide-mtl.org     Ex Aequo's mission is to promote and advocate the rights of people with motor disabilities. Whether it is for transportation, housing, health and social services or municipal life, its team works relentlessly to improve the well-being of people with disabilities.  Ex aequo's mission is to promote and advocate the rights of people with motor disabilities. Whether it is for transportation, housing, health and social services or municipal life, its team works relentlessly to improve the well-being of people with disabilities. Together with community organizations, favoring citizen action and working on all fronts such as, information, representation and mobilization, Ex aequo was one of the first organizations in Montréal to devote itself entirely to advocating the rights of people with disabilities. Ex aequo's mission is to promote and advocate the rights of people with motor disabilities. Whether it is for transportation, housing, health and social services or municipal life, its team works relentlessly to improve the well-being of people with disabilities.   To contact Ex aequo: 3680, Jeanne-Mance Street, Suite 328, Montréal, QC, H2X 2K5 514 288-3852 www.exaequo.net