The shelter is closed after 7 months of housing those who are experiencing homelessness. Michael spent more time with the residents of our social hall than anyone else. Every day he sat in the Christian Education building for 2-3 hours while folks showered and did their laundry. This allowed for a unique opportunity to get to know every person who utilized our space. In tough times it is easy to become disconnected from the shelter guests. It is wonderful that our pastor was able to make meaningful connections with those who share our space.
We asked Bethesda Project to provide us with an update on the status of the residents of our shelter. We knew that many had moved out to permanent housing and seeing the numbers was very promising for Philadelphia! Bethesda reports that between April and July, 13 people moved out of shelter. Of these 13, one moved in with relatives, seven moved into permanent supportive housing, two moved into rental housing, one person moved into PHA housing and one person relocated to a Safe Haven. This month, five people are expected to transition from the church shelter program into permanent supportive housing. These are all wonderful outcomes for the folks that utilize our space. It is inspiring to see how far Philadelphia has come in providing stable housing for those who have experience chronic homelessness.
Residents who do not yet have long-term housing plans are residing at temporary shelters like St. Mary’s Church Shelter (men) and The Well (women). St. Mary’s continues to struggle to provide food for the 30 residents. This facility has no kitchen and any snacks, sandwich fixings, etc that anyone could provide would go directly to the individuals who are residing there. You can contact T Sanders at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to provide items that do not require cooking for the residents there.
Thank you to everyone who offered hot meals, catered food, donated breakfast items, etc to our shelter this season. The shelter ministry is such an important partnership and we appreciate everyone caring for the residents and their well-being.