Durham Seeks Community Support for Project Homeless Connect

Volunteers and Supplies Needed to Help 500 Homeless People

DURHAM, N.C. – September 19, 2012 – (RealEstateRama) — This year’s Project Homeless Connect is right around the corner and event organizers need Durham’s support to serve the more than 500 people who will be seeking help.

The 6th Annual Durham Project Homeless Connect will be held on Thursday, October 11, 2012, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park, 409 Blackwell St., Durham. The event is a one-day, one-stop center to provide people experiencing (or at risk of experiencing) homelessness with a broad range of services including housing, employment, health and dental care, mental health care, veterans’ and social service benefits, legal services and more.

According to Program Manager Matthew Schnars with Durham Opening Doors Homeless Prevention & Services in the City of Durham’s Community Development Department, organizers are expecting an increase in people needing help this year. “We are preparing for 500 people this year, which is more than in previous years and a reflection of the increase in need seen in our community,” Schnars said. “Since 2007, we have served more than 1,500 people experiencing homelessness and we really need our community’s support again this year so we can provide critical and basic services to those in our community who need it the most.”

Schnars said approximately 500 volunteers are needed for this year’s event with positions available for all schedules, abilities and interests. Volunteers can help on the day of the event or the evening before with event set-up. Bilingual volunteers fluent in Spanish are also needed. People interested in volunteering should register through the volunteer portal website at http://www.phcdurham.nisurvey.com by Friday, October 5.

Hygiene and clothing items are also needed, which will be distributed to participants at the conclusion of the event. Hygiene supplies such as soap, lotion, disposable razors, shaving cream, deodorant, toothbrushes, toothpaste, lip balm, tissue packets, shampoo and feminine hygiene products are needed. Clothing supplies, such as new or gently used coats and gloves as well as new undergarments and new socks are also needed.

If neighborhoods, businesses, schools or churches would like to organize a drive for these needed items, or make a monetary and tax-deductible donation toward the purchase of these items, contact Schnars at (919) 560-4570, ext. 22249 or by email at Matthew.Schnars (at) DurhamNC (dot) gov. The requested deadline for completion of these drives is Friday, October 5.

This year’s event is being organized by the City’s Community Development Department in partnership with over 20 organizations from all sectors of the Durham community including non-profits, faith-based organizations, universities, and local businesses.

For more information about the 2012 Project Homeless Connect, visit http://www.DurhamTenYearPlan.com, “like” at http://facebook.com/phcdnc, or “follow” at http://twitter.com/phcdnc.

About the Community Development Department
The City of Durham’s Community Development Department is responsible for coordinating the City’s housing resources and various housing assistance programs as well as promoting affordable housing by working with investors and community housing development organizations. The department also provides assistance with the abatement of lead in older homes and administers the City’s entitlement programs from the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development. Guided by the City’s Strategic Plan, the department helps to ensure that the City has thriving, livable neighborhoods by enhancing housing quality and affordability for Durham residents. To learn more, visit http://durhamnc.gov/ich/cb/cdd/Pages/Home.aspx.

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