Come see a Great movie during the Olympia Film Festival, "Great Speeches From A Dying World", AND help support EGYHOP, a shoe-string-budget, direct-service-providing, all-volunteer-run, non-profit group serving homeless and low-income populations in downtown Olympia.
First, about the movie (quoted from the festival guide):
And, then, a short description of EGYHOP:
The Close the Gap Coalition is seeking volunteers to help eliminate unsheltered or “street” homelessness. The Coalition aims to boost the volunteer base for existing programs to an extent that opportunities for capacity growth open up.
Olympia made a major correct move with Quixote. I watched as an outsider evolution of Quixote from tents on grass to tarps on chips. A contribution to the local economy is only possible once exterior motives like shelter, relaxation, and food are satisfied.
Advocates for the houseless-homeless-mobil homeless (rv-car campers) continue their grassroots efforts in Lacey and Olympia, as evidenced by recent Olympian and olyblog reports.
A little while back I referred to a lawsuit that is making its way through the state court system that might impact Lacey's new homeless ordinance.
Tomorrow (sometime after 9a) the state Supreme Court will hear arguments in the case between Woodinville and Northshore United Church of Christ. A few years ago, Woodinville passed an ordinance restricting how churches can host homeless camps. Basically, the church is arguing that the city doesn't have any business telling them how they can practice religion as it relates to their helping the homeless.
How the Supreme Court decides (at least I think this) will have a lot to do with whether Lacey is sued over their ordinance.
The arguments will be live on TVW and I'll post them here after they're on the internet.
Anyone know the typical turn-around on a state Supreme Court case?
They also have consistently done this without contacting direct service providers. Organizations like the one I work for, Bread & Roses, and our close partner EGYHOP, can at the very least provide harm reduction services to campers who are forced to move. I feel justified in saying that I don't trust the City of Olympia to effectively advocate for individuals transitioning from one campsite to another. It's not their job to be advocates, which is why they should seek out advice and help from those whose job that is. I should be very clear, however, that this is not a role I'm willing to fill over and over for years to come. I simply will not be a part of people being pushed around from one unsafe environ to the next. I think that viewpoint reflects the overall view of the homeless advocate community.
Being that there is going to come a point, likely sooner than later, where advocates are going to start refusing to aid the City in this capacity, the City should think long and hard on one question. 'Where can people go and be left alone?'
If Steve Hall, the Council, or Staff can quickly answer that question, then a lot of time can be saved on providing people with stability, which we've learned from Camp Quixote is therapeutic and empowering.
It's not all bad work coming from our esteemed corporate daily. Reporter Christian Hill and photographer Steve Herppich spent quite some time at Camp Quixote the last few days and you can see the results. I think they did a commendable job and I thank them for their effort.
And now is an excellent time to remind all that the camp can always use volunteers. Drop us a line at www.campquixoteoly.googlepages.com
The National Weather Service is predicting some much lower temps for us soon - low Sunday night of 21, Monday night 19, and that isn't taking wind chill into account.
If you can help Bread and Roses out with winter needs, give them a call at 360.754.4588.
Although we are not a clothing bank, we do run a Winter Clothing Drive every year. Keep us in mind for your good-condition jackets, sweaters, hoodies, sweatshirts, heavy pants, boots, scarves, gloves and knit hats. We accept blanket donations year-round as well as donations of tents, tarps, and other camping related materials.