Sara Cumming, Executive Director

Sara has been involved with Home Suite Hope in a variety of ways since 2014. She first learned about HSH through her role as a

Professor at Sheridan College. At the time, our Homeward Bound Halton program was relatively new and Sara completed a preliminary study on how the program was running, both at HSH and at Sheridan College. Being immediately impressed with the organization Sara began to volunteer at HSH in a variety of ways. In 2016, Sara joined the Program Advisory Committee (PAC) of HSH as an academic expert on marginalized populations. In July 2018, Sara officially joined the team at HSH as our Program Director. She works to strengthen community relationships and our ability to fully support our participants in a holistic way. Growing up in a single mother-led family and becoming a single parent herself prior to beginning her post-secondary degree, Sara brings her lived experience to the table and acts as a huge asset to our organization.

Sara holds a B.A. in Sociology, a M.A in Social Justice and Equity Studies both from Brock University and a PhD in Sociology with a concentration in gender and inequality from the University of Waterloo. She has spent almost two decades studying the plight of lone mother-led families and their interactions with social policy (Social Assistance, Student Assistance Programs, Subsidized Housing and Childcare).  We are now thrilled to have Sara join our team as our new Executive Director and are confident that the knowledge she holds will strengthen our programs and help us to provide better services to our participants.


Sharlene Gumbs, Senior Program Manager

Sharlene leads program delivery to Home Suite Hope participants for both our ReStart Halton and Homeward Bound Halton programs. She is responsible for the development of HSH program and services by working with HSH staff, volunteers, community partners and other key stakeholders for the delivery and development of programs and services. Sharlene also leads HSH’s highly engaged and effective volunteer committee – the Program Advisory Committee (PAC) which is a group of senior volunteers across multiple disciplines that advise our program team and programs.

Sharlene is a Registered Social Worker of Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers, a Registered Rehabilitation Professional of The Vocational Rehabilitation Association of Canada and holds a Masters of Social Work (MSW) from York University. She has over ten years’ experience working in social services with agencies such as Ontario Works (OW) and Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB). She also has gained strong volunteer management experience within the William Osler Health Care System. Prior to becoming Program Manager with HSH, Sharlene held the position of Family Case Manager with HSH in a part-time capacity since May 2011. Sharlene has experienced single parenting while building her career as a social worker and offers valuable insights to single parenting to all our participants. We are thankful for her commitment to HSH programs and participants.


Catherine Lucasan, Program Coordinator

Catherine came to Home Suite Hope in August 2016 and is responsible for managing all program inquiries and referrals. She also manages all internal program supports, and supportive programming. Catherine also plays a vital role in program delivery and coordinates both internal and community-based program events.

Catherine comes to us with a Bachelor of Social Work with minor in Sociology from Ryerson University. With her previous work experience as a Frontline Worker at the Salvation Army Peel Family Shelter, her compassion for families experiencing poverty and homelessness has been evident from the start.


Nikkian Hanson, Caseworker

Nikkian started working with Home Suite Hope in March of 2018. She is responsible for supporting families in both our ReStart Halton and Homeward Bound Halton Programs. She works with our participants to create and execute individualized service plans and assists our families in reaching stability and independence.

Nikkian comes to us with an Honors BA in Human Rights and Equity Studies and a Diploma in Community and Justice Services. She has five years’ experience working with at-risk youth and adults in the community and social service sector as an Autism and at-risk youth consultant. She has extensive experience and knowledge working with individuals diagnosed with developmental disabilities and Autism.


Leah Burton, Program Assistant 

Leah joined the Home Suite Hope team in 2017 as a Student Intern. She is currently a 4th year student earning her Bachelor of Social Work from McMaster University. Leah returned to the team this year and currently assists in the managing of referrals, program development for our children’s financial literacy program, facilitates other events such as Hope 4 Holidays, and assists when general program and participant needs arise. Leah brings a positive, energetic and compassionate approach to working at Home Suite Hope.



Carolyn Cancela, Program and Development Officer

Carolyn holds a dual role at Home Suite Hope: overseeing the day-to-day operations of the home office and supporting the growth of HSH’s resource development needs. Carolyn has been professionally involved in the non-profit sector for more than fifteen years, working for charities such as Casey House Foundation, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada and Hamilton Health Sciences Foundation. She combines her understanding and experience in the field with a special talent for grant writing, volunteer management, and stewardship.



Izabel Rader, Bookkeeper

Joining us in 2007, Izabel is the longest standing member of the Home Suite Hope team. She works part-time as our bookkeeper and plays an important role in managing all finances and housing subsidies for our families; a core aspect to the support that we provide to our families. Izabel brings a wealth of experience to the agency and consults not only to HSH but also to other small companies and charities in the GTA.