A Church’s Perspective

13 07 2009

By: Jackie Go

This week I talked to the head pastors of a church in Coquitlam. I proposed our idea to them in order to get feedback from a church’s perspective. This church is heavily involved in missions work and was one of the host church’s for the Cold Wet Weather Mat Program, which is a temporary shelter program which runs in the winter months. Overall the church was receptive to our idea. They asked some good questions, which helped us develop the solution to the stage which it is at today.

Some of the key issues which the church brought up were:

  • Client Selection – how we pick the client, and the public scrutiny that goes into deciding who to sponsor.
  • Success rate – how to ensure that the client can be self-sustained within 6-12 months. Our client selection process relies heavily on the expertise of homeless advocates and outreach workers who know the clients on a personal basis. I will be contacting the outreach workers this week and ask them if they can find a few potential clients whom they feel would be a good fit for our program. Finding the homeless person who is committed to getting out of homelessness and has a high potential to get out of homelessness when given a home for 6-12 months will be essential for the success of this program.
  • Living costs –we recognize that housing is not the only thing which a client will need in order to get out of homelessness. They also need food, clothing, and other life essentials. Our idea is based on a homeless sponsorship and we would like to get the whole community involved with this. The community, which includes citizens and local businesses, will be asked to provide for the living costs – including the donation of life essentials such as food, clothing, and furniture.
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