Out of the rain, into a home

By United Way of King County, on September 21, 2015 | In Fighting Homelessness

Homelessness. Sigh.

This is a big one to take on, and there are always new aspects to take into account, like the increasingly competitive housing market. That’s why we’re ever-grateful for donors’ partnership to keep us on the forefront of prevention efforts and solutions.

What we accomplished together in 2014:

  • 2,241 units of permanent housing with counseling and health services were created.
  • Veteran homelessness is down by 15%, per the One Night Count.
  • 13,750 people living on the streets found a safe place to sleep.

Those are certainly great successes. But unless you never pass any highway bridge or off-ramp and have never seen a tent city, you know there’s more work to do. Our community is too determined and too generous to have people struggling to survive outside. So here’s how donations fuel our homelessness efforts, appropriately called Out of the Rain.

Out Of The Rain

Boosting emergency shelters
Often at capacity, shelters are forced to turn people away. We’re investing in 150 new shelter beds this year as well as staff support to help move people out of shelter. This increased investment in staff will help people connect more quickly to longer-term solutions.

Providing outreach workers with new tools
We’re investing $350,000 in the Navigators program. These outreach workers build trust with people sleeping on the streets and have funds to help with immediate needs, such as a deposit for an apartment, car repairs or transportation costs to reunite with family.

Preventing homelessness for foster youth
In just a year, 34% of kids exiting foster care in King County become homeless. You’re helping us tackle this from all angles, including working with our state’s legislature to extend foster care to age 21. This gives young people a chance to get on their feet.

You’re a great community member. Are you also a great friend? Simple friendship can make all the difference for someone transitioning off the streets. The Companionship Program needs just four hours a month of your volunteer time. Training is right around the corner so email vmatulionis@uwkc.org today to get your name in.


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