Crowdfunding Campaign Launched for Backpack Beds
With the distribution our entire supply of 67 Backpack Beds downtown last week and with us about to distribute an additional 24 in SE and North Portland this week, it's clear we've only begun to address the need. For one thing, the VA has learned about our program and also wants the Backpack Beds for homeless vets! Such has prompted us to launch a crowdfunding campaign with the goal of raising $5000 for an additional 50 Backpack Beds by March 31.
Please let all your friends know about the campaign through social media, etc., so we can raise that $5000. And encourage them to let their friends know. That's how crowdfunding works!
Take a look at the crowdfunding page (complete with video!) intern Juliana DePietro developed for us at Razoo.
Volunteer-of-the-Year Allyson Famous along with Susan Hoover organized a full-blown Spa Night for our women guests at our downtown Center on Saturday, January 25. Allyson had originally only planned to do a Makeover Night, but with some recruiting also found some helpers who were willing to offer manicures, facials, and massages along with make-up.
Life on the streets is particularly hard on women, and Spa Night provided a wonderful opportunity for us to pamper them and, in momentarily transforming them, boost their self-esteem.
Vancouver Hospitality Center Opens
Sunday we opened our fourth Hospitality Center, crossing the river into Vancouver. We have been working with three churches in town--First Christian Church, Compass Church, and New Life Church—to get all the pieces in place, and with a generous offer from Share House, which offers other homeless services, we were able to find a home.
The first guests to come through the door were naturally a little tentative. They were used to coming to Share House for meals and shelter, but what was this “hospitality” business? But our volunteers were very cheerful and welcoming, and by inviting them in for coffee and cookies and then engaging them in cribbage, Yahtzee, chess, and other games, laughter could be heard around the tables. Most of our guests were more-than-willing to tell their stories, and at the end of the evening both guests and volunteers left feeling jazzed by the experience. As one guest said, “If it weren’t for you guys, you know where I’d be? Out in the cold. Alone. Doing nothing. Thanks for being here.”
We had twenty that first evening. The word will spread, and next time there will be more.