By Laura Christman
Tackling homelessness in Redding will require compassion, collaboration and champions, Lloyd Pendleton told a packed auditorium in Redding Feb. 11.
“Let’s get over this idea of ‘those people,’” said Pendleton, a key player in dramatically dropping the rate of chronic homelessness in Utah.
Don’t judge or condemn the homeless, he stressed at a community forum presented by The Women’s Fund of the Shasta Regional Community Foundation in partnership with the Record Searchlight and Shasta Community Health Center. Pendleton said people without homes are still people – citizens of the community “who are suffering and in need of hope.”
Thursday’s event at Sequoia Middle School was the 16th community forum sponsored by The Women’s Fund and the best attended. The 774-person-capacity McLaughlin Auditorium was nearly filled. Women’s Fund Chairwoman Denise Yergenson described the forum as a success, praising Pendleton for being inspiring and informative.
“The audience was so engaged,” she said. “We collected a two-inch stack of cards with comments, questions and concerns.”
Pendleton held management positions at Ford Motor Co. and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Welfare Department, and was director of Utah’s Homeless Task Force. He’s an advocate for Housing First, a strategy that offers homes and hope to the homeless.
Continue reading “The Women’s Fund sees huge turnout for forum on homelessness”
By Laura Christman
The hopelessness of homelessness is a tangle of complexities. People sleep on sidewalks, camp under bridges, live in canyons and show up at shelters because they are addicted to alcohol, dependent on drugs, traumatized, impoverished, struggling with an ailing mind or under the weight of other troubles.
Instead of trying to fix the problems, what if the first step were to give the chronically homeless homes? Would it make a difference? Could it work in Redding?
Housing First is an approach – a mind-set, really – that provides homes to the homeless without making them promise to get better or be better. They don’t have to go into rehab, sign up for counseling, see a doctor, take meds or get work. The deal is simple: Here’s a place to live.
It’s built on the premise that giving people a home gives them a sense of belonging. That stability is crucial for wanting to work on sobriety and getting help for other serious problems.
Housing First advocate Lloyd Pendleton will speak in Redding at noon Feb. 11, sharing the story of how Utah dramatically decreased chronic homelessness. The free forum at McLaughlin Auditorium on the Sequoia Middle School campus is presented by The Women’s Fund of the Shasta Regional Community Foundation in partnership with the Record Searchlight and Shasta Community Health Center. Continue reading “The Women’s Fund partners in hopes of solving homelessness”
Welcome to The Women’s Fund of the Shasta Regional Community Foundation’s blog. It has been created to enhance communication among members, celebrate our successes and share information. From our upcoming events, such as the Feb. 11 Forum on Homelessness and State of the Fund in May to the personal stories of our grant recipients, member profiles and accomplishments, as well as casual meetups, it all will be documented here.
The Women’s Fund member Laura Christman Manual, a local journalist, will be writing many of our blog posts and I’ll contribute some, as well. Member Ashlee Tate and I also will be collecting and posting members’ profiles for our Member Moments feature. We ask that you upload your photo and fill out your profile information on this Google Document we created.
Ashlee will be asking for a few minutes of your time to create individual video testimonials based on the theme #WhyIFund. She may ask those who are more tech-savvy to do it on their own and submit. She and I will record videos of other members by either scheduling a time or approaching at events over the next year — so be ready to share why you belong to the the Women’s Fund and why it’s special.
Carole Ferguson has created and will moderate The Women’s Fund Facebook Group for members only. The Facebook group is different from our Facebook Page in that you’ll be able to engage in discussions, celebrate one another, share photographs and videos, as well as links to content that you think may be of interest to members. If you haven’t been added to the group yet, friend one of us on Facebook and we’ll be happy to add you. Continue reading “Welcome to The Women’s Fund blog”