Thursday, December 13, 2012

Check out our Website

Dear Bloggers:
This blog has now been transferred to our website:   check us out at that location for up to date information and how you can help.  Thanks!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Jim's Story of Recovery From Homelessness

Jim first had contact with our shelter last summer (2011) in late August, about three weeks before we were to close up for the summer season. At 59, Jim had an income from Social Security Disability due to mental illness and a physical disability. Close to our shelter closing,  Jim moved into a market rate one-room apartment that costs $400.00 a month and had a shared bathroom down the hall.  Jim's rent was well over 50% of his income but he was determined to make it work.  He moved into his apartment, our shelter provided him with housewares and he came to our end-of-the-year pizza party for our graduates. 

Fast forward 10 months later and Jim came to our shelter door needing help.  To be honest, seeing someone needing shelter who we helped place into housing is like seeing your adult kids return home after things "didn't work out".  After 7 months of paying rent, he fell behind, got depressed and just stopped trying.  He made poor financial decisions when he had no room for mistakes and borrowed money from the bank.  Did you know that some banks allow people on a fixed income to borrow ahead on the next month's check?  The bank charges a fee and the customer is allowed to borrow a percentage of their fixed income.  When their income is directly deposited, the "borrowed" amount is taken which leaves the customer needing to borrow again.  It's very similar to the paycheck loans that you see in economically depressed areas but this is a practice of major banks within our Greater Cincinnati area. 

I did an assessment on Jim and we brought him back into our shelter.  Last summer one of the things we had Jim to do was apply for the Housing Authority of Covington.  We knew that this was not a fast solution to his homelessness but we did know it was an investment.  10 months later, it was a life changing solution!  Jim moved into our summer program on May 30, 2012 and moved into his apartment which is rent subsidized for seniors on June 19, 2012.  His rent will be no more than $220.00 each month and this includes utilities.  He lives in an apartment that has it's own bathroom, laundry on-site and an elevator.  He has a view of the city from the 10th floor. 

Many people don't know that rent subsidized apartments, even for seniors, can take anywhere from 6 months - 1 year of waiting on a long list.  When you are homeless the question becomes do you risk moving into an apartment you can't afford or do you continue to rely upon shelters and sleeping outside? 

Jim's story is not unique but it's also not the norm.  Everyone here at our shelter arrived to homelessness is a different set of circumstances and everyone finds their way out if they want in their own unique way.  What our shelter attempts to do is to provide support by means of clear instructions to obtain resources and expectations that meet our guests ability.  Jim was willing to do all the work such as starting a savings account (rather than checking), set aside $200.00, apply for housing and enroll in case management services. 

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Volunteer Appreciation Dinner

 Please join us on Monday, April 16th at 6:00pm for our annual Appreciation Dinner!  The event will be held at Mother of God Church in Covington. 

Rachael Winters

As of today, we have now provided 323 people with shelter during our cold season.  This is a 22% increase from last year at the time we closed our doors at the end of March.  Only with the support of our volunteers and donors have we been able to continue to keep up with the growing need for the basic necessities which we provide at our shelter.  If you have given time, money and/or donations - please stop by for a great evening of fellowship and to meet others like you who help our shelter. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Over 300 Served with Shelter, Food, Clothing and Safety.

Dear Friends of the Shelter,
This weekend, we sheltered our 304th guest.  Last year at the end of the winter season we served 265 total.  Homelessness has increased for many who thought they would never find themselves in such a situation.  The lines are long for getting help (affordable housing, case management, disability advocacy and employment support) but our shelter is glad to be here for those who need us.  Here are some updated statistics:
Total Unduplicated Guests Served: 304
Male: 236       77.6%
Female: 68     22.4%
Veterans: 32   10.5%
Total from KY: 261   85.8%
Total from Outside KY:  43   14.1% (referred by police or hospital)

From Kenton County: 167   63.9%
            Top 4 Cities:     Covington – 137
                                    Independence- 7
                                    Erlanger- 5
                                    Elsmere- 4
From Campbell County: 42   16.1%
            Top 4 Cities:   Newport – 22
                                    Fort Thomas – 5
                                    Alexandria – 4
                                    Dayton – 3
From Boone County: 20   7.7%
            Top 4 Cities:     Florence – 16
                                    Burlington – 4
                                    Hebron – 1
                                    Union – 1
From Other KY Counties: 32   12.3%  (12 different KY counties)

Thursday, March 8, 2012

A Night at the Movies - Cancelation

The Emergency Shelter of NKY regrets to report that our fundraiser, "Night at the Movies"  scheduled for March 13th has been canceled.  The Rave theater, despite having a contract to show the movie "Being Flynn", now reports that the movie will not be coming to our local area.  Our chair of the event, Cathy Kunkel-Mains along with many others, have put forth a great deal of effort to plan this event and we were devastated to hear this news.  Our apologies to everyone who wanted to attend, who were selling tickets and who have already paid.  We will be refunding all money collected for the fundraiser. 
Rachael Winters