Communities of Faith

Council for the Homeless appreciates how communities of faith support efforts the mission to prevent and end homelessness in Clark County. There are current projects underway related to housing and homelessness that are dependent on leadership and involvement from communities of faith. If your congregation would like to participate in any of these projects, please feel free to contact the coordinator that is named and for whom contact information is provided or feel free to contact Council for the Homeless. We welcome your participation and are grateful for your involvement in these important projects that assist in ending homelessness and making home possible for everyone in Clark County.

HOUSING RELIEF FUND

CFTH-Housing-Relief-Fund-Logo

Many thanks to the individual donors and to the following faith community partners
who have donated to the Housing Relief Fund:

Beautiful Savior Lutheran, Church of the Good Shepherd Episcopal, Congregation Kol Ami, Liberty Bible Church of the Nazarene,
Pacific Northwest Conference of United Methodist Churches, St. Andrew Lutheran Church, St. John Lutheran Church,
St. Luke’s Episcopal, Thrivent Financial, Trinity Lutheran Church, Unitarian Universalist Church.

The idea: The Housing Relief Fund was created to assist Clark County individuals and families quickly end their homelessness. It is not uncommon for people who are homeless (living in a car, tent, trailer with no running water, or emergency shelter) to have income, but also barriers that prevent them from moving forward with their lives. Support and guidance from our staff, coupled with one-time assistance from The Housing Relief Fund, helps them secure and maintain housing going forward. Without this essential assistance, they will remain homeless and their circumstances will become even more dire and complex. 100% of contributions to the Housing Relief Fund go toward assistance to individuals and families.

Successes so far: To-date the Housing Relief Fund has assisted over 200 families and individuals with securing a new home. Along with the needed financial assistance, Council for the Homeless staff provides personalized encouragement and support which creates stability for newly housed families. The trauma and costs associated with continued homelessness are stopped in their tracks! View our 2016 Housing Relief Fund Report.

How your faith community can help: Faith partners are needed to help keep the Housing Relief Fund funded! We can only help people quickly end their homelessness if the funds are available. Faith partners can direct money to the Housing Relief Fund through special offerings, special events, or any number of ideas. One congregation donated funds remaining from a special project that came in under budget. Council for the Homeless can provide guest speakers, newsletter articles, bulletin inserts, or other assistance to educate and inspire participation. To help please contact Charlene Welch at 360-993-9564 or cwelch@councilforthehomeless.org.

 

VILLAGE SUPPORT NETWORK 

The Village Support Network is a project in partnership between Council for the Homeless, the Village Support Network of New City Initiative and your faith community. Teams from local congregations are needed to provide hospitality and support to newly housed (recently homeless) families from Clark County. New City Initiative provides training and ongoing support to the congregation teams. Council for the Homeless identifies eligible families. This is a wonderful and meaningful way to build community and help families be successful. To learn more please contact village@newcityinitiative.net

Click here for all of the information on Village Support Network 2017.


Good Deeds with Beads

Since 2013 Good Deeds with Beads Has Raised almost $50,000 to help people who are homeless in Clark County.

GDWB sale at Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church in Vancouver.

GDWB sale at Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church.rk County.

A ministry of St. Andrew Lutheran Church, Good Deeds with Beads (GDWB) is dedicated to making and selling beaded bracelets, earrings, and lanyards with all proceeds directed to the Council for the Homeless client assistance fund and to other efforts at helping people who are homeless in our community. Join in this effort by scheduling a GDWB volunteer to visit your congregation to host a sale, speak during your worship service or education time, or host a beading event as a service project. Contact gooddeedsbeads@gmail.com or Charlene Welch to learn more or schedule a date. More information in the GDWB-CFTH Partnership Brochure.

SAFE CAR CAMPING

The Clark County Safe Car Camping Program is a collaborative effort between communities of faith and local social service agencies to provide safe, secure and legal car camping for families and individuals who live in their vehicles transitionally. The steering committee is actively recruiting congregations who can provide their parking lot to host 1-3 vehicles each. For further information or to find out if this program is a good fit for your faith community,contact Sharron Brainard at quiltbrains@gmail.com. For further reading: The Columbian News on the Safe Car Camping Program.
 

WHO (WINTER HOSPITALITY OVERFLOW)

Since 2003 Council for the Homeless, Share, St. Andrew Lutheran Church and St. Paul Lutheran Church have partnered to bring the Winter Hospitality Overflow (WHO) to our community, offering additional emergency shelter capacity during the winter months to families and individuals experiencing homelessness.  WHO guests are offered a warm place to sleep, showers, meals, and the welcome and warmth of a caring community working to address the most basic of human needs. This has all been provided by caring communities of faith who volunteer for shifts at St. Paul Lutheran Church (for men) and St. Andrew Lutheran Church (for families) throughout the season, which runs November 1-March 31 each year. If your congregation would like to participate in service for the WHO or make a donation or or learn more, please go to whoprogram.org or contact the Who Program Coordinator, Lynn Johnson at whoprogram@gmail.com. 

FAITH COMMUNITY AFFORDABLE HOUSING TASK FORCE

A Faith Community Affordable Housing Task Force was created to better understand address the issue of the lack of affordable housing in Clark County how it is an underlying factor contributing to homelessness. This work group has brainstormed and prioritized options for communities of faith to be engaged in solutions. The Task Force Coordinator, Denny Scott, can be reached at rdennyscott@aol.com.