According to the Salt Lake County Homeless Coordinating Council, across Utah there are approximately 4,000 people each night that are homeless. While the majority is adult males, this number also includes women and children. It breaks my heart to think that many people don’t have a warm place to sleep each night.
Each holiday season I work with Listen employees and our vendors to do a service project for those in need. This past November it was suggested we collect items to donate to The Road Home Christmas kits. I knew the Road Home was located at the homeless shelter downtown, but that was about it. As we collected items throughout November and December it became my goal to learn more about what The Road Home organization was all about.
Operating in collaboration with the Salt Lake Community Shelter, The Road Home is an organization that not only helps to provide temporary basic needs to those without a home, but more importantly they also work to get them integrated back into the community. They help the shelter provide temporary housing to those who may need a place to stay for just a couple nights, weeks or months. They also provide families and individual’s self-sufficiency and housing programs. Each adult who comes into the shelter has the option of signing up for a case manager who can help them with finding employment, debt management, health and wellness and many other services.
One thing that I didn’t know about the organization was the great housing plans they have. The Road Home has a couple properties and partners around Utah to be able to transition families and individuals back to being self-sufficient. Their newest property Palmer Court, is an old hotel that they converted into a complex with 201 apartments. Between this facility and the others, they were able to give housing to 464 households and 863 individuals last year. What surprised me was that their services don’t stop there. They continue to assist those families and individuals with basic needs until they are able to provide for themselves.
With the donations from all the Listen employees and vendors, we donated over 500 of the basic needs items such as shampoo, body wash, gloves, blankets, etc. for the Christmas Kits. I know everyone thinks of donating to organizations such as The Road Home over the holidays, however, they need those basic donations throughout the year. I would like to encourage everyone to find similar organizations in your areas. Whether you can donate $5 or $1,000, or just your time, make a donation to help make a difference in someone’s life.
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