RentSmart Network Continues to Grow
It is an exciting and busy time as RentSmart continues to expand nationwide. As we begin the new year, it’s a fitting time to pause and reflect on the amazing strides and impact that the RentSmart network has made in the past three years.
Only 3 short years ago, there were 23 RentSmart Educators, all of whom were based in the Lower Mainland or Vancouver Island. As of January 2018, there are:
- 240 Educators in BC
- 96 Educators in Alberta
- 23 Educators in Manitoba, and
- 17 Educators in Ontario
The pace of growth has been blistering, and alongside the excitement, there have been some important lessons learned. Based on these growing pains, we'd like to share out some of our commitments to you as a network:
- the registration, ordering of manuals and tracking impact systems can be a bit confusing. We are working with a systems analyst to make these easier to use and will announce changes this spring
- we are reviewing materials through an accessibility lens and will be integrating some more graphics and summaries for participants who may have lower literacy levels
- RentSmart Landlord has gone through the fall pilot and we are integrating the learning and will make it widely available to educators--- it helps to engage landlords on supporting successful tenancies
- make sure you have let property managers and housing providers know about the certificate. Do they recognize it on their housing applications? This recognition provides a reason for people to attend and become RentSmart graduates.
- have a number of organizations co-host a course and each sponsor a couple of people to attend
- connect with organizations that are doing lifeskills education, such as employment centres, and add RentSmart to their workshop schedule
- make sure you market the courses through public libraries, community newsletters and elsewhere--- remember that the Community Educator Marketing toolkit is there to help
- serving snacks is always a draw!