Homeless woman from First Nations community fights to build her own home

Homeless Woman Builds Her Own Home, Gets Fined And Can’t Live There

Homeless woman Darlene Necan is one of the few who have actually tried to fix her own problem. Unfortunately, the cabin she is still in the process of building in Ontario is causing her more problems than she started with.

Now Darlene cannot live in it or even continue building it because she is being fined more than she can afford. The First Nations woman is facing several thousand dollars in legal fees for attempting to build a one-room home on land where she grew up, and she believes it is because the land has become property of the Crown.

Darlene began building the cabin last year after she was denied housing alongside the community she is a member of, the Ojibways of Saugeen First Nation, which was founded in the late 1990s. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry has charged the homeless woman with violating the Public Lands Act, and she is already facing up to $10,000 in fines, and additional fines up to $1,000 for every time she is caught building her cabin.

Darlene Necan is still proud of what she’s done.

“This is my castle and I’m so proud to have it, even though it’s not done yet.”

The First Nations homeless woman has taken to the internet to help her finish, hoping that the generosity of strangers will give her the financial backing she needs to continue solving her own problem and not remain a victim of those who refuse it to her. Using Idle No More, she is also utilizing the help of financial advisers and donations, as well as the sales of hand-crafted gifts at an event tomorrow.

Darlene is not the only person involved in the struggle, as the funding campaign reveals. The First Nations community is facing a harsh winter without housing or winter clothes if needs cannot be met.

Homeless woman Facebook outrage
Homeless woman Darlene Necan’s struggle sparks Facebook outrage.

The unorganized township of Savant Lake is only represented locally by a single store owner, Denis Mousseau, who also owns a hotel across the street. Though he feels the community’s pain, he cannot do enough to help the homeless woman or her fellow community. He fully supports what she’s trying to do though.

Darlene Necan says she feels “shattered” by the circumstances as she faces her court date on November 20.

“I still keep going with this fight no matter how awful it makes me feel for trying to house myself and help people, because a lot of people don’t believe in themselves or that things can change if you fight hard enough.

“It’s what I try to believe. I try to be hopeful. That’s hard too and a lot of times I cry by myself here. But I talk to my [late] mom and my [late] dad and it keeps me going because I keep thinking of them.”

Homeless woman Darlene Necan is only one of many denied housing, and in spite of legal problems, still trying to solve her own problem. Perhaps if she can beat the system, others of the First Nations community will do the same.

[Image via Two Row Times, Facebook]

Comments