Now that summer has arrived and the temperature is heating up, many people are outside enjoying the City of Roses. Summer also provides more opportunities to engage with the increase in men, women and children who are hurting, homeless and on the streets. In response, Downtown Clean and Safe has officially kicked off their “Real Change not Spare Change” campaign aimed at encouraging people to rethink how they give money to help people in need. (Downtown Clean and Safe is an offshoot of Portland Business Alliance).
“Portland is a very generous city. And people want to help those who they perceive being in need,” said Lynnae Berg, Executive Director of Clean and Safe. “What we are hoping to do is channel that inner-generosity and get people to give to this coalition of service providers. It will really leverage their money in a way that can’t happen with individual dollars to panhandlers.”
Portland Rescue Mission is one of three agencies the campaign will fund, along with Transition Projects and New Avenues for Youth. All were selected because of their ongoing work with a vulnerable demographic.
“We picked this coalition because of all the work these agencies, including Portland Rescue Mission, do to provide that first step off the streets,” Berg said. “It’s really important for us to work with those who are helping with that initial decision, and are there when individuals decide ‘I need to get into a shelter,’ or ‘I need to change my life.’”
At Portland Rescue Mission, we are in the business of giving hope and restoring life. Thanks to your compassionate and generous support, we are able to provide over 330,000 meals per year at our Burnside Shelter. We also can provide shelter for 317 people on any given night.
“Every time a person that is homeless comes to our Burnside Shelter for a meal, shower, bathroom, or to pick up their mail, we greet them with a smile, and ask their name and their story,” said Alexa Mason, on our Community Engagement team. “We want to discover who our guests are, build a relationship with them and work together with them to bring them out of homelessness and into a restored life.”
Relationship leading to restoration is what our Hope Ministries, Pathway Ministries and New Life Ministries are all about.
Thanks for partnering with Portland Rescue Mission to give hope and restore life for people in need. (Be sure to check out seven more ideas we recommend for helping a hurting person). And if you would like to volunteer with us, please consider helping us fill an immediate need for breakfast servers at our Burnside Shelter on Wednesday mornings.