Hope Center announces Street Outreach Team, seeking donations
LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – The Hope Center announced the restart of its Street Outreach Team, which visits people who don’t have shelter, to provide basic necessities and connect them with needed resources.
The program, which operated from 2016 to 2019, is being funded by the CARES Act through the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government. The Hope Center is partnering with the Office of Homelessness Prevention and Intervention, Community Action Council and New Vista to provide necessary resources and encourage people to shelter as safely as possible from the cold temperatures and the COVID-19 epidemic.
“We are here to help men and women get off the streets and, ultimately, into housing,” said Janice James, interim director for the Hope Center. “With the double threat of cold weather and COVID-19, these services are more important than ever. Not everyone has been receptive to accepting services, but we continue to build relationships to meet immediate needs and remove barriers leading to homelessness.”
According to the Hope Center, Street Outreach team members visit known camps and follow up on referrals from Lexington Police; the Office of Homelessness Prevention and Intervention; Parks and Recreation; and other community members.
They provide referrals and transportation to shelter; distribute supplies of food, water and blankets; and connect people with other needed resources, such as medical care and mental health services.
“Our team will be checking on people and making sure they are aware of how to get to shelters,” said David Shadd, director of programs at the Hope Center. “Sometimes, despite our best efforts to encourage those who are homeless to accept shelter, they may not want to receive the services offered to them. During colder months, it will be even more important to encourage those without a home to come inside – especially when the temperatures can be life threatening. Services such as our HopeMobile and Street Outreach will be lifesaving by building communications to those staying on the streets.”
The outreach team is on patrol from 10 A.M. to 6 P.M. every weekday, although hours may vary based on weather and client needs.
If you see someone in need, you can leave a message with the referral line at 859-252-7881 or email email@example.com.
The Hope Center is also in need of funding for its’ client Christmas party next week to purchase warm clothing, supplies and toys. Click HERE to donate.