This is Lalema Bakate, a valued member of the Housing Forward Outreach and Engagement Team. Lalema is an Engagement Specialist and according to Armando Smith, Director of Operations and Client Services, she is able to keep a shelter site running smoothly without ever raising her voice above a whisper.
Demetrius Lowery and Calvin Jefferson, who we at Housing Forward affectionately call Team DC, have been consistently providing meals to clients who have been moved from a rotating overnight emergency shelter program to individual 24/7 accommodations so they can safely “shelter in place” during the corona outbreak. The number of people being served has grown from 64 to 104 over the past month. This is nearly double the number we would be serving in our regular shelters.
Over the past couple weeks, there has been a lot of news about the COVID-19 pandemic–both in our agency communications and in the local and national news. The seriousness of these times is clear. But there is also good news that comes out of this once-in-a-lifetime situation, so we want to share some bright spots!
Our office manager received a call recently from someone who wanted to make a donation but asked if it could be picked it up.
Housing Forward is delighted to introduce Erik Johnson who joined our agency as Director of Development and Communications this month.
Jennifer is a Housing Forward Street Outreach Specialist.
Volunteers are an essential part of the PADS Emergency shelter program which operates from September to May providing a place to sleep and three meals, 7 nights a week at 11 rotating sites in host congregregations in Berwyn, Forest Park and Oak Park for between 20 and 60 people in the midst of a housing crisis.
Forest Park Baptist Church is coming on board as a Monday night secondary shelter site in January.
New PADS Shelter site to open.
The last night of the regular shelter season was Monday, May 13th at First United Church of Oak Park. Site Captain Steve Meier and his team, most of whom are affiliated with the St. Giles Family Mass community, arrived first to set up the space. Someone got the decaf coffee percolating in the giant urn and put out the sugar and creamer. Close to 60 pads and bed rolls were laid out in the separated family and women’s areas, and on one side of the partition in Centennial Hall. Tables and chairs were arranged on the other.