A Message from our Executive Director – Winter 2020
As the previous article mentioned, Wow! What a year 2019 was! We were able to help 616 or 140% more people through Stable Home, we added more staff, we held record-breaking fund-raising events and we were able to add four more
transitional housing units to our stock through the support of a generous investor.
Should we rest?
Heck no! Let’s keep it up. The number of people in our community needing our help is growing and we must continue to rise to the occasion. Stable Home is poised for another record year as we prevent families with minor children from losing their homes. We plan to begin offering case management services to these folks in addition to our existing
Transitional Housing clients. We are partnering with ELAP on legal assistance for these clients too. And finally, we aren’t content to grow our Transitional Housing program by only four apartments; we now have funding to grow another four units in 2020, increasing our housing stock by almost 25% in one year!
Why do we do this? Let me tell you a few stories about the challenges our clients face and you’ll understand:
· Carmen and her three kids just moved into their new Attain apartment home last month after living in their car for the last nine months. Previously the family had stable housing, but after the children’s dad suddenly left, the family was on their own and could no longer afford their housing. Carmen did not want to worry about her children continuously needing to change schools based on where they could find housing so she enrolled them in a homeschool program and started to drive for a meal delivery service so that her kids could be with her as she worked. Every night she would find a new place to park that felt safe enough for her and her kids to get some sleep. On lease-signing day, the kids were running through the apartment exclaiming how big it was and how they could play hide-n-seek in it. They were also amazed that it had a refrigerator and that now they could go grocery shopping and fill it. Our case manager’s own heart was full when she told this story. This family of four is on their way towards sustainable permanent housing.
· Mary is an elderly woman who is a regular guest at our weekly Community Supper held at Holy Spirit Lutheran Church. She let our staff know that she really appreciated the Holiday gift card to Fred Meyer because she was able to use part of it to buy a Christmas tree, which her grandkids enjoyed when they visited her. She said she wouldn’t have bought a tree without that extra help. Our Holiday Program sometimes helps in ways we couldn’t even imagine…spreading that Holiday spirit!
· Denise has a young child who was sick for several weeks in December. She is a childcare provider and could not bring him to work with her when he was ill. Without the income from her job, Denise found herself in the position of not being able to pay her January rent and was facing possible eviction. She called our Stable Home line and in no time at all we were able to help her with January rent, keep her home, and get her to her next paycheck.
These are all folks who live in our community. Our neighbors, friends, co-workers, and acquaintances. How could we not help them?
Enjoy the early peek of Spring and we’ll see you on Memorial Day at 7 Hills!