Here at Home (Ages 14+)

Here at Home (Ages 14+)

In search of the real cost of homelessness.

Every year, 1 in 5 of us experiences mental illness. The most vulnerable risk falling into a vicious cycle of instability, poverty and addiction. This is life for a small group of long-term homeless people trapped at the margins of society. Standard practice is to get people clean, sober and medicated before housing them. The stats say this doesn't work. What if that script were flipped? What if we gave people homes first?

Here at Home is a Web documentary about At Home, a radical Canadian experiment that aims to prove there is a way to end chronic homelessness. Small, local crews are shooting a series of short docs in each of the 5 trial cities. Dispatches from the project in action, the films are posted, one by one, throughout the final year of the study. Each is an intimate glimpse inside the world of the participants, service providers and community members, a snapshot of the intense personal dramas unfolding across the nation.

Is it really possible to end chronic homelessness? Is "housing first" the answer? Can we afford it? Is it fair? With 50 films, data from the study and a dynamic blog, Here at Home is a window on a cutting-edge social experiment that could change your heart, your mind and your bottom line.

  • Here At Home: Life Isn't Easy
    2012|5 min

    Covering everything from bug bites to welding to drug use, Dr. Plante counsels participants with a mixture of tough love and compassion in this glimpse of her at work.

    This short film is a chapter from Here At Home, a web documentary about mental health and homelessness that takes us inside the Mental Health Commission of Canada's At Home pilot project.

  • Here at Home: Honestly Painful
    2012|4 min

    Haunted by visions of his father, Mark thought he’d won the jackpot when he discovered he was going to be housed. But now, safe and secure in his apartment, he’s overwhelmed by a new fear – will he lose his home when the study ends?

    This short film is a chapter from Here At Home, a web documentary about mental health and homelessness that takes us inside the Mental Health Commission of Canada's At Home pilot project.

  • Here At Home: Will to live
    2012|3 min

    After years on the edge, Hector now has a place to live, a job and a beloved dog. Shuttling farm hands to work, he remembers the life he lost and worries about his homeless son.

    This short film is a chapter from Here At Home, a web documentary about mental health and homelessness that takes us inside the Mental Health Commission of Canada's At Home pilot project.

  • Here At Home: Where I Belong
    2012|4 min

    Lise has been living with schizophrenia for years, some of them spent in dangerous housing conditions. Now she’s selling her paintings in a Moncton marketplace and celebrating her new home.

    This short film is a chapter from Here At Home, a web documentary about mental health and homelessness that takes us inside the Mental Health Commission of Canada's At Home pilot project.

  • Here at Home: The Wound Inside
    2012|3 min

    Lukas makes his rounds as a caseworker, delivering meds, gifts and good cheer to participants while exposing the dark history behind the addiction issues that plague Winnipeg's Aboriginal homeless population.

    This short film is a chapter from Here At Home, a web documentary about mental health and homelessness that takes us inside the Mental Health Commission of Canada's At Home pilot project.

  • Here At Home: Not Chosen
    2012|3 min

    For every housed participant, another remains homeless. Wandering the empty corridors of his shelter, Valère reveals his struggle with HIV/AIDS, and his longing for a home of his own.

    This short film is a chapter from Here At Home, a web documentary about mental health and homelessness that takes us inside the Mental Health Commission of Canada's At Home pilot project.

  • Here At Home: A New Lease
    2012|3 min

    Determined to go to NYC to reconnect with a famous actor, Simon is radically altering his life. He’s quit hard drugs, prostitution and crime and is moving into a new apartment.

    This short film is a chapter from Here At Home, a web documentary about mental health and homelessness that takes us inside the Mental Health Commission of Canada's At Home pilot project.

  • Here At Home: Money Changes You
    2012|4 min

    After more than 20 years on the street, James has doubts about living indoors. Struggling to master the appliances in his new apartment, he reflects upon pizza, cockroaches and the syndromes of modern industrial society.

    This short film is a chapter from Here At Home, a web documentary about mental health and homelessness that takes us inside the Mental Health Commission of Canada's At Home pilot project.

  • Here At Home: Evicted
    2012|4 min

    On the verge of being evicted, Theresa heads out to work panhandling on a familiar patch of concrete in downtown Toronto. Confiding in her caseworker, Bouchra, Theresa blames herself for her eviction and delivers a startling revelation.

    This short film is a chapter from Here At Home, a web documentary about mental health and homelessness that takes us inside the Mental Health Commission of Canada's At Home pilot project.

  • Here At Home: A Model Person
    2012|3 min

    Mr. MadDogg gives the lowdown on drugs, friendship and the street as he whips up breakfast for 100 fellow residents at the Bosman Hotel.

    This short film is a chapter from Here At Home, a web documentary about mental health and homelessness that takes us inside the Mental Health Commission of Canada's At Home pilot project.