FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, June 13, 2018
CONTACT: Brandi Tuck, Portland Homeless Family Solutions, 503-719-2769, firstname.lastname@example.org
Portland Homeless Family Solutions purchases new campus with shelter, housing and services for kids and parents experiencing homelessness
PHFS generated $3.3m to purchase the campus in the Lents neighborhood from over 300 individuals, foundations, and corporations
PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland Homeless Family Solutions (PHFS) generated $3.3m in their Families First Campaign to purchase a property in the Lents neighborhood that will become their new headquarters. The property, comprised of a 16,000ft2 building and eight 2-bedroom apartments, will operate as an emergency family shelter for 26 families a night, be the home of PHFS’ housing and prevention programs, and offer wrap-around services like mental healthcare, childcare, life skills training, and more. The campus includes an acre of land which PHFS plans to develop into long-term housing affordable to people making very low incomes around 2020.
This campaign was a direct response to the homelessness and housing crisis in Portland. Everyone can see that Portland and much of Oregon is experiencing a housing crisis and a homeless state of emergency. What everyone doesn’t know is how many people who experience homelessness are kids and their parents. Last school year, 4,317 students ages 5-18 experienced homelessness in Multnomah County alone, according to the Oregon Department of Education. Over 22,000 students experienced homelessness across Oregon. At the same time, the Welcome Home Coalition reports that Multnomah county has a shortage of over 28,000 units of affordable housing for every low-income family who needs one.
PHFS’ Executive Director Brandi Tuck says, “It is unacceptable for children and their parents to have nowhere to go when they experience homelessness and need help. We believe that our community can do better. PHFS has a plan to do better. The overwhelming support from the Portland community shows us that people are ready to support programs that help our most vulnerable residents – our children – get off the streets and back into a home. We are so grateful for our private and public supporters who came together to help end homelessness for thousands of kids and their parents.”
Major contributors to the campaign include The City of Portland, Stoel Rives LLP, Oregon Community Foundation, The Standard, and Moss Adams. This remarkable campaign garnered support from every corner of our city and includes partnerships with businesses, foundations, faith communities, and over 300 individuals.
Mayor Ted Wheeler says, “I would not be Mayor, but for the fact that for many years I was an overnight shelter host at Portland Homeless Family Solutions’ Goose Hollow Shelter. I do hope there will be a day where we do not need shelters in our community; today is not that day. I am happy to support the essential and meaningful work PHFS does to serve our most vulnerable neighbors.”
Over the summer, PHFS will conduct some minor renovations including adding four shower stalls, dividing up some large spaces with sheetrock and drywall to provide more private spaces for families, painting, replacing carpet, and building a playground. PHFS also needs to acquire furniture for the shelter, kitchen, and dining room. The main principles guiding PHFS’ remodel and space design are building dignity, restoring power, and promoting autonomy for the families who participate in their programs. They project the Lents campus will open in early Fall 2018.
For more information about this expansion, or to offer pro bono services or in-kind items, please contact 503-915-8306 or visit www.pdxhfs.org.
PHFS’ roots go back to 1994 when the Goose Hollow Family Shelter was opened at the First United Methodist Church of Portland. Over the years, PHFS continued to expand their shelter programs into a robust, well-respected social service agency that helps over 200 homeless families with children every year Last year, PHFS helped 653 moms, dads, and kids from 185 families move back into permanent housing, sheltered 130 families with children, and prevented homelessness before it started for over 100 families with children.
About Portland Homeless Family Solutions: Portland Homeless Family Solutions (PHFS) empowers homeless families with children to get back into housing and to stay there long-term. We envision a community where no family experiences homelessness and where every family receives the support and compassion necessary to thrive. PHFS helps over 200 homeless families with children find temporary shelter and move back into permanent housing every year. It takes an average of 54 days to help families find permanent housing, and 94% of the families keep their housing long-term.
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