One-Stop Shop Event Connects People Who Are Homeless with Services
October 9, 2007
An estimated 4,400 people experience homelessness in Contra Costa County on any given night, and the second annual Project Homeless Connect aims to help change that.
During the one-day event last year in Richmond, service providers and volunteers assisted more than 500 people who are homeless with food and other supplies, medical, dental and other services they otherwise may not be able to receive, and information on housing opportunities, including immediate placement into a shelter.
This year's Project Homeless Connect 2 will be held in Concord and runs 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. October 16 at the Willow Pass Center, 2748 East Olivera Blvd. Organizers expect to serve even more people this year, said Cynthia Belon, Director of the Contra Costa Health Services (CCHS) Homeless Program.
"Project Homeless Connect helps a lot of families and individuals meet a variety of important needs, all at one time, as well as making positive connections to end their homelessness," Belon said.
Sponsored by CCHS, the Greater Richmond Interfaith Program and the City of Concord, Project Homeless Connect 2 will offer medical and dental care, employment services, alcohol and drug referrals, bicycle and wheelchair repairs, and much more to people who are homeless.
People will have the opportunity to meet with a judge for the potential resolution of minor legal offenses starting at 1:30 p.m. Identification cards also can be ordered from the Department of Motor Vehicles and personal grooming services will be available.
"This event is made possible only through all the hard work of the volunteers and the unprecedented collaboration of service providers that are often inaccessible to the homeless population," Belon said.
Shuttle transportation to and from the event is available at local homeless shelters, multi-service centers and other locations starting at 8 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. Services are provided on a first come, first served basis and the event includes a free lunch and other donated items.
For more information about the event or to volunteer, call 925-313-6124. Volunteer applications are on the CCHS website (www.cchealth.org). To donate to Project Homeless Connect, mail checks to the Greater Richmond Interfaith Program/Project Homeless Connect, 597 Center Avenue, Suite 325, Martinez, CA 94553.
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- Cynthia Belon, CCHS