CHARLOTTE, NC – Over the past several weeks, The Homeless Services Network (HSN) agencies have come together to find a proactive solution to assist potentially displaced families and individuals during the Democratic National Convention.

The laws of economics show that large events in the area impact hotel and motel rental rates. Charlotte currently has low-income families and individuals living in motels who are facing potential displacement from their shelter due to the increased rates. Although it is difficult to predict an exact number, up to 100 families could be impacted.

The HSN agencies have crafted a multi-tier approach to first, work to prevent displacement, and second, provide support to families and individuals who have been displaced. In a short period of time, the group was able to raise nearly $20,000 to carry out their plan which is designed to keep people safe and minimize the impact on school-aged children.

Putting this plan in place was truly a community wide effort. Funding was provided by donors that represent a cross-section of our community; businesses, congregations and individuals, including the Wells Fargo Foundation and Religious School Children of Temple Beth El as collaborative contributors.

The multi-tier approach includes the following strategies:

  • A motel fund to prevent displacement
  • A single-site shelter at the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club, 534 Spratt Street
  • This site will also act as the hub for transportation to Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools for school-aged kids
  • A Room in the Inn – rotating congregational shelter
Population Seeking Assistance

Responsible Agency And Contact Info

Families with children A Child’s Place, 704-343-3790

Salvation Army Women’s Shelter, 704-348-2560

Individuals Urban Ministry Center, 704-347-0278

Salvation Army Women’s Shelter, 704-348-2560

Men’s Shelter of Charlotte, 704-334-3187

 

At this time, 33 local congregations have committed to providing a total of 747 beds over eight nights through the Room in the Inn program, administered by the Urban Ministry Center. The HSN agencies are grateful that the faith community has stepped up to help in this time of need.

Bob Henderson, Senior Pastor at Covenant Presbyterian Church said, “Our community of faith is embracing this opportunity to address the needs of our homeless citizens, to ensure that all children enjoy a successful start to the school year, and to shine a light on the ongoing challenges many in our community face when trying to provide decent housing for their families.”

While this is a contingency plan for housing for families and individuals who may be displaced during the week of the Democratic National Convention, it is not a solution and points back to the overall need for additional quality, affordable housing in Charlotte. Families should not have to live in motels and risk being displaced.

Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx states, “I applaud the Homeless Services Network agencies for their collaborative effort to develop a plan to support families and individuals impacted by the DNC. I thank the faith community, businesses and individuals who have also stepped up to help the most vulnerable in our community. Homelessness is an issue that will continue to exist after the week of the Democratic National Convention. The need for this plan points back to the overall need for additional quality permanent affordable housing throughout Charlotte. This is a community issue and I implore and encourage us; elected officials, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Coalition for Housing members, service providers, the faith community, and the citizens of Charlotte, to combine our collective resources to continue developing solutions to end and prevent homelessness.”

Plan to House Displaced Families & Individuals During Democratic National Convention

Type of Intervention

Responsible Agency

Location

# of Beds

Target Population

Dates

Motel Fund to Prevent Displacement A Child’s Place

Motels throughout CLT

40 families

Clients of A Child’s Place

As needed

Other families identified by CMS’ McKinney-Vento liaisons

est. 8/31-9/7

Intact families that cannot be served in shelter-site
Single-Site Shelter-HUB for school transportation for all shelters Salvation Army

Boys and Girls Club at 534 Spratt

32 beds/approx. 10 families

Female-Headed households with school-age children

8/26-9/9

Room in the Inn/Rotating Congregational Shelter Urban Ministry Center

Congregations throughout MECK

120 beds/ approx. 40 families

Families without school-age children(and individuals if needed)

8/31-9/7

TOTAL

Approx. 90 families TOTAL: $19,064

Contacts:
A Child’s Place – Annabelle Suddreth, Executive Director
asuddreth@achildsplace.org, 704-343-3790 x9552

Salvation Army – Deronda Metz, Director of Social Services
deronda.metz@uss.salvationarmy.org, 704-621-6370

Charlotte-Family Housing – Darren Ash, Executive Director
DAsh@charlottefamilyhousing.org, 704-335-5488

Urban Ministry Center – Dale Mullennix, Executive Director
dmullennix@urbanministrycenter.org, 704-926-0619

Mecklenburg County, Community Support Services – Peter Safir, Homeless Services Director
Peter.Safir@mecklenburgcountync.gov, 704-641-9173

About Homeless Services Network
Homeless Services Network is a group of agencies united for Charlotte-Mecklenburg’s homeless and those who are most vulnerable to homelessness. The group recognizes homelessness is a multi-faceted problem and that combining knowledge and expertise offers a greater hope of achieving their goal to prevent and end homelessness.

About A Child’s Place
Homelessness for children isn’t just about where they lay their heads at night; it’s about where their heads are during the day at school, too. Founded in 1989, A Child’s Place of Charlotte is working to erase the impact of homelessness on children and their education, reaching 2,228 children during the 2011-12 school year. In June 2012, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools reported 4,922 homeless students enrolled in the county’s public schools. To learn more about A Child’s Place or to make a donation, call 704-343-3790 or visit www.achildsplace.org.

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