Focus on Life: Homelessness

December 2017: Homelessness

Info on River Fall's Our Neighbors' Place

Background Information

For residents of Pierce and St. Croix Counties who find themselves in some kind of housing crisis, Our Neighbors' Place offers a range of services to provide safety, provision and a path back to independent living. Our Neighbors' Place offers short-term emergency housing, long-term transitional housing, food, clothing, counseling and a variety of other services to help people get through difficult times in their lives.

Day Center

The gateway to Our Neighbors' Place services is the Day Center located in River Falls. It is here that prospective clients can "drop in" to begin navigating the resources to help resolve their issues. The Day Center offers food, laundry, a mailing address, voice mail, phone, public shower, access to a kitchen, and taxi services. Guests also have an option to work with a professional case manager to address their individual situation. Finally, the Day Center serves as a location for the Salvation Army in River Falls.

Transitional Housing

For those in greatest need, Our Neighbors' Place offers transitional housing for up to two years in its own four-unit complex in River Falls. Families contribute 30 percent of their income toward rent as they seek a stable job, permanent housing and other goals. Our Neighbor's Place also helps place 3o to 60 families with outside services and facilities.

Backpack Program

Another aspect of Our Neighbor's Place is the Backpack Program. Started as a partnership with the River Falls School District and Ezekiel Lutheran Church, it provides food to approximately 85 students on the weekends during the school year when other resources, such as free and reduced-price school lunches are unavailable.

Community Closet

To help guests acquire needed clothing, Our Neighbors' Place houses the Community Closet. Here, guests can find high-quality garments for work or day-to-day use.

What can we do?

  1. Pray that some of the physical and spiritual needs of our neediest neighbors are improved through their contact with Our Neighbors' Place.
  2. Financial Support (see below for contact information)
  3. Volunteer in the following ways:
    • Day Center Guest Coordinators - welcome guests, answer the phone, respond to questions and offer a variety of resources
    • Community Closet Workers - help clients choose clothing, process donations, and maintain the retail space, along with behind-the-scenes work of sorting clothes
    • Backpack Program - help transport food (meet the delivery truck at the River Falls Food Pantry on Wednesday mornings, load the food into your or someone else's vehicle for transfer to Ezekiel Lutheran Church), help stock and organize the shelves of donated food to be placed into backpacks
    • Special Event Fundraiser - help in various ways to plan the Casino Night and Dinner, Black Tie Affair, Kinni Trout Trot and Neighbors Helping Neighbors Campaign

For more information about Our Neighbors' Place or to volunteer, call: 715-426-9000 or visit their website: www.ourneighborsplace.org.

And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.” But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” Luke 10:25-29 (ESV)

- From your FirstCov Social Concerns Ministry Team

Through information, prayer needs,
and tangible ideas to help,
we are equipping FirstCov as the hands and
feet of Christ to the world.

 

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