The Regional Municipality Of York


Make Rental Happen receives national communication award

NEWMARKET – The Regional Municipality of York and the Human Services Planning Board of York Region (HSPB-YR) have received a Silver Leaf Award of Merit from the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) of Canada for the Make Rental Happen social media campaign.

“It is an honour to be recognized nationally for our communication efforts on such an important issue,” said York Region Chairman and CEO Bill Fisch. “The Make Rental Happen campaign has brought the need for affordable and safe housing options for all income levels to the forefront and highlighted the work of the Human Services Planning Board of York Region.”

The campaign, led by the HSPB-YR, leveraged Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to raise awareness of National Housing Day and the need for more rental housing in York Region.

“Social media provided an equal voice to those affected by the lack of rental housing in York Region,” said Town of Newmarket Regional Councillor John Taylor, Co-Chair of the HSPB-YR. “Residents of all ages and income levels, different levels of government and the building industry shared their stories through the Make Rental Happen social media campaign.”

The campaign resulted in a potential reach of more than 220,000 people through social media. Videos were submitted by HSPB-YR members, community leaders and residents of the Region telling why they support housing that is affordable. The campaign also received support from TV personalities who submitted videos, including CBC’s Rick Mercer and HGTV’s Carson Arthur and Jo Alcorn.

“This award shows we are making a difference in helping those who are being forced to live beyond their means, but this is only the beginning,” said Susan LaRosa, Co-Chair of the HSPB-YR. “We still need more rental options in York Region so our young professionals can live and work here, our kids and seniors can live independently in the same town they have roots established with their family and friends, if they want.”

IABC Canada is a national network of more than 4,500 communication professionals. The Silver Leaf Awards program recognizes communications excellence across Canada. This year IABC Canada received more than 140 entries from across Canada, with only 40 honoured with a Silver Leaf. The complete winners list is available on the IABC Canada website.

The Make Rental Happen campaign continues with an online pledge. For more information, please visit


Media Contact: Kimberley Henderson, Community and Health Services, The Regional Municipality of York
905-830-4444 or 1-877-464-9675, ext. 72053, After-hours: 905-806-1216,

Make Rental Happen,York Region,Affordable housing,Human Services Planning Board,Making ends meet The Regional Municipality of York en-US Media Release