Imagine trying to find somewhere to live for yourself and your young daughter when wrongfully evicted. Or applying for support with energy bills only to find out that your application is rejected because one single word was missing from one the documents. Imagine your case worker telling you that there is no point trying to appeal a decision that would send you further down the spiral of homelessness. Or being told that ‘you people’ always want more when asking for basic support that you are entitled to.
These are not hypothetical scenarios. These are lived experiences. In this case, they are Toneva’s lived experiences.
Toneva Munroe is a Caribbean born, Boston raised, compassionate advisor and enthusiastic advocate. As a thought leader, expert and single parent Toneva loves being a mother to her daughter while enjoying things like dancing, biking and other outdoor activities and of course advocating for justice efforts wherever possible.
In this episode, Toneva speaks powerfully about the many ways in which the social services that were supposed to support her, failed her. She shares her experiences of navigating a complex web of government and charitable services, guided by frontline workers who are often overstretched and under capacitated. She is also clear about what inspired her turning point: someone who stepped into the ring with her rather than cheer her on from the sidelines.
Listen to this episode to hear Toneva’s compelling appeal for everyone – and especially those in charge of designing and implementing social services – to be humble and listen to those with lived experience. They are the real experts.
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