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connect THE COALITION

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J U N E /J U LY 2 0 1 4

how you are helping jamie and xavier get back on their feet.


FROM OUR FAMILY TO YOURS You don’t need a calendar to know it. It’s here…summer, I mean. A glance at the thermometer tells you the whole story. For most of us, summer has its annual rituals and traditions of barbecues and beach days. But for some, the hottest time of the year means the crisis only worsens. If a family is temporarily living with friends or relatives, landlords may no longer overlook the arrangement as it becomes long-term. With school out for the summer, many children lose access to free breakfast and lunch programs. Astronomical childcare costs overburden an already stretched family budget. So you can see – there is no summer break from homelessness.

“Your support is critical to our ability to continue these services.”

But there is good news. Because of your continued generosity and support, you help us meet those needs head-on. Families who come to the Coalition find shelter, nutritious meals, and childcare provided as part of the case-managed programs we offer. Your support is critical to our ability to continue these services. Without you, the scorching summer would be extraordinarily difficult for our clients. Thank you for standing with us and helping push back the many crises summer can bring to the men, women, and children in our community. Sincerely,

Brent A. Trotter President/CEO

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Chairman Randy E. Schimmelpfennig Law Offices of Dan Newlin & Partners Vice Chair Elena H. Norman Hilton Grand Vacations Secretary Samuel C. “Trip” Stephens III ZOM, Inc. Treasurer John E. Hearn Orlando Utilities Commission President/CEO Brent A. Trotter Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida, Inc. Timothy R. Baker, AIA, Baker Barrios Architects, Inc. Carlos A. Barrios PE, Stephens-Barrios Christopher C. Brockman, Holland & Knight LLP Bakari F. Burns, Health Care Center for the Homeless, Inc. Fara K. Dantzler, Wells Fargo Bank N.A. Eric David, Expedia Local Expert Sylvia Doggett-Jones, Community Volunteer Tracey L. Ellerson, Baker Hostetler LLP Glenn M. Fournier, Marriott Vacations Worldwide Corporation Jim Fritz, Orlando Magic

Eric D. Gassman, Orange County Government David Jasmund, PCE Investment Bankers, Inc. Tony Jenkins, Florida Blue Christine S. Kefauver, HDR, Inc. Fred R. Kittinger, Jr., University of Central Florida Ronald R. Lamb, SunTrust Bank Trevor Larsen, PE, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Sean A. McLaughlin, CNL Financial Group / JDS Holdings, LLC Michael Miller, Miller Air Group Inc. John P. Moskos, Bank of America Lee Nimkoff, Brio Properties T. Todd Pittenger, Akerman LLP Laura L. Pooser, UCF College of Arts and Humanities Stacey A. Prince-Troutman, Broad and Cassel John Rivers, 4R Restaurant Group Ty G. Roofner, Burr & Forman LLP Rick Schooler, Orlando Health Douglas M. Spencer, Spencer Consulting Services Scott R. Stahley, Lincoln Property Company of Florida, Inc. Barbara Larson Stuart, The Stuart Group Richard G. Wack, Mediation Services of Central Florida, Inc. Robert F. Wagner, Tupperware Brands Corp. Bill L. Warren, Reedy Creek Improvement District Michael Weinberg, HFF, L.P. Mark Woodbury, Universal Parks & Resorts Aaron Zandy, Ford & Harrison LLP


Our Partner: Bright House Networks “Like a caring friend, Coalition for the Homeless is here every day and night for those who need a place to go. Not just somewhere to sleep and eat, but reassurance that there’s a brighter tomorrow. This inspires us at Bright House Networks.” Michel Champagne, Vice President & General Manager of Central Operations at Bright House Networks

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o quote the Beatles, “I get by with a little help from my friends.” At the Coalition, it’s the support of our friends that makes our work possible – friends like Bright House Networks. You have likely seen Bright House Networks’ “Hello Friend” commercials, but you might not know what a loyal friend they’ve been to Coalition for the Homeless. Throughout the years, they’ve supported us by sponsoring our fundraising events, such as the Hearts of Gold concert and the Doug Spencer Golf Challenge. What does that mean? By contributing to the success of our events, they’ve made sure that more than 600 men, women, and children are provided not only with the basics but with life-changing opportunities. Friends bring out the best in each other, and Bright House Networks’ support helps our clients bring out the best in themselves, through educational opportunities, job skills training, counseling, and even voluntary pre-kindergarten classes for the little ones.

We want to thank Bright House Networks for helping to make sure our clients not only survive but thrive. We’re both proud and honored to call them our friend.

UPCOMING EVENTS More Than A Meal Tour JULY 8 & AUGUST 12

Join us for a light lunch and an informational tour of our main campus. In one short hour, you’ll get an inspiring firsthand look at how your support helps homeless men, women and children regain productive lives. TO REGISTER: centralfloridahomeless.org

Taste of the Nation Orlando AUGUST 9

Join us for Share Our Strength’s 25th Annual Taste of the Nation Orlando at the beautiful Orlando World Center Marriott. For a quarter of a century, this event has featured Central Florida’s top chefs who come together for one great cause – to end childhood hunger in Central Florida. As one of the event’s beneficiaries, the Coalition is able to provide meals to the hundreds of homeless children we serve every day. FOR TICKETS: ce.strength.org/orlando

More than 30 of Central Florida’s finest restaurants will be at Taste of the Nation Orlando this year. Don’t miss it!

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Jamie never imagined she would be homeless at age 34.

BETTE B ET

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S OR

TUN

ITIE

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Jamie was a hard-working woman, taking care of both her mom and nine year old son, Xavier, when crisis struck. She’d been steadily employed by a company for nearly four years when they suddenly closed their doors, leaving her jobless. One in three Americans is just one paycheck away from homelessness – a statistic that Jamie never expected to become. After losing her job, she was unable to pay her bills or her rent. The final blow came when Jamie, her son, and her mom were evicted. At first, they were able to stay with family, but Jamie soon realized her family needed more. They needed help. They needed resources. Upon learning about Coalition for the Homeless from a relative, Jamie and her son turned to us for a helping hand.

“The generosity of the Coalition’s supporters gave me a place to go. It gave me options,” says Jamie. With support and encouragement from her case manager, Jamie immediately engaged herself in the Coalition’s programs. “Somebody else believes in me, so I have to believe in myself.” Jamie began working toward her General Education Diploma through our on-site partner, Orange County Public Schools’ adult education program. Excited and anticipating her diploma,

she has already signed up for Valencia Community College, with the goal of a degree in sports medicine and massage therapy.

“I don’t want to be in dead-end jobs,” says Jamie. “My son deserves a better life.” In order to support herself and Xavier during her schooling, Jamie worked with the Coalition’s onsite partner, Goodwill Industries, to improve her job prospects. With their help and her drive, she found not only one but two jobs! Jamie’s positive attitude toward education and her future has certainly inspired Xavier. Before arriving at the Coalition, her son’s grades were poor and he was not reaching his full potential. Now he is actively involved in the on-site Boys and Girls Club and, much to his mother’s delight, has become an honor-roll student. Jamie and Xavier recently transitioned from our main campus emergency shelter to the Women’s Residential and Counseling Center, where they have both continued to thrive. They are currently on the waiting list for Scattered Site, our community housing program. “If you take advantage of what the Coalition has to offer, you’ll be successful. The program has helped me a lot. I’m glad I came. I know I made the right decision.” Thank you for supporting the Coalition and believing that, together, we can transform lives. Because of your generosity, Jamie and Xavier are shaping a new future.

“I am glad I came. I know I made the right decision.” 3


WRCC resident Luz and her children spend a moment of precious quality time together in the newly refurnished family room.

A Place to Call Home You spend a stressful day in the office. You get caught in traffic. You burn dinner. Luckily, all the stresses of the day can fade away when you sit down in your comfortable family room to watch a movie, read a book, or play a game.

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hen you’re homeless, there aren’t many places that provide respite from the constant struggles. Two of the Coalition’s volunteers, Ren and Karen Werrenrath, made it their mission to change that. After receiving a generous grant award from the Winifred Johnson Clive Foundation to refurnish the Women’s Residential and Counseling Center (WRCC) family room, Ren and Karen put their talents to work. They designed a peaceful environment for our clients to call “home” while busily engaged in programs to get back on their feet. “It would surprise most people to learn how satisfying it is to volunteer and help others,” said Ren. The Werrenrath’s relationship with the Coalition started about three years ago when Ren semi-retired. At first, he was just looking for something to do with his spare time. He had no idea that this time-filler would turn out to be a passion.

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“The Coalition doesn’t just view itself as a one-time hand-out. It’s designed to transform people to become contributing members to society,” said Ren. “It makes volunteering and giving worth it, knowing that the projects and services will be utilized by the people who come in and out of the Coalition.” The Werrenrath’s journey with the Coalition doesn’t end there. They volunteer and contribute on a regular basis. Because of their strong connection to the organization, they have sponsored and named the laundry room in the new Men’s Service Center (MSC). The laundry room will serve both the Center for Women and Families (CWF) and MSC, providing clean bedding and clothing for clients, which makes a world of difference in their comfort and confidence while working toward their new lives. REN AND KAREN ARE TWO WONDERFUL EXAMPLES OF THOSE IN OUR COMMUNITY WHO GENEROUSLY SUPPORT THE COALITION. BECAUSE OF YOU, WE ARE ABLE TO TRANSFORM THE LIVES OF OUR NEIGHBORS IN NEED.


The Coalition could not do what we do without the generous companies and individuals who help to fulfill our needs.

We want to thank SunTrust Foundation for its recent donation of $25,000 to name the Community Partner Office in our new Men’s Service Center. This will be a designated place for our men to receive job skills training, financial literacy assistance, and other services that will help transform their lives.

People who believe in a cause will go to great lengths to support it. Despite a rain-out, the participants in our 2014 Doug Spencer Golf Challenge raised nearly $79,000 to help us provide food, shelter, educational opportunities, and more to 600 homeless adults and families each day. We can’t thank them enough!

GIV ING BACK

Universal Orlando Foundation and its wonderful contractors spent a weekend replacing the 20-year-old air conditioning system in our Center for Women and Families. Now, our clients will be able to focus less on sweating and more on studying, working hard, and taking the steps they need toward a better future! We are very grateful.

Thanks to your dollars, we have been able to hire 18 new staff members who will provide assistance in areas such as intake, case management, and veteran services in our Men’s Service Center. Our residents will get the attention and resources they need to be successful in their transition back to selfsufficiency.

GR A NTS $70,000 - $79,999 Disney Helping Kids Shine Grant Program $50,000 - $59,999 Walmart Foundation $20,000 - $29,000 Darden Restaurants Inc., Foundation $1,000 - $4,999 Charles Schwab Foundation The Charles Hosmer Morse Foundation

Your generous contributions help keep our fully-licensed, on-site daycare running smoothly. This allows parents to focus on their jobs or school, as they have the peace of mind that our staff is taking great care of their children in a structured learning environment.

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THERE IS NO summer break from homelessness there is a national “summer surge” in homelessness. As temperatures rise, so does the number of homeless families and children. read on to learn some of the most common summertime struggles and what you can do to help.

SHELTER

Often, relatives and friends allowing families to stay in their homes find the situation to be less tolerable once children are out of school and at home all day.

FOOD

Homeless children often go hungry during the summer when they can no longer access free breakfast and lunch programs through their schools.

CHILDCARE

Parents already struggling to make ends meet may face the additional cost of childcare when the school year ends. The average cost of center-based daycare in the United States is $972 a month.

HEAT

Getting into your car after a quick shopping trip is bad enough during Florida’s brutal summers, but imagine if you actually lived in your car. Calling your car home during the hottest months of the year isn’t just uncomfortable — it’s downright dangerous.

here’s how you can help bring hope to homeless families this summer: INVEST

We rely on the generosity of our community to help us provide crucial services to Central Florida’s homeless men, women, and children. From food and shelter to educational classes and an on-site daycare, we couldn’t do what we do without YOU.

CREATIVE FUNDRAISING IDEAS

Summer is the perfect time to get your family involved in fundraising for the Coalition! • Turn your time outdoors into an impactful • Clean out your house and hold a yard sale donation. Whether you walk, bike, swim, or benefiting our organization. kayak, ask family, friends, and coworkers to • Kids love helping others, and fundraising is a sponsor your activities. Get active for a cause great way to teach them to set and achieve goals. and feel great! Help them start a lemonade stand, hold a car • If you aren’t the outdoor type, social media wash, or sell arts and crafts. is a great way to raise money and show your philanthropic side. Hold a Tweet-a-thon to help the Coalition or raise funds via Facebook. We’d love to hear from you! Share your fundraising efforts by emailing Betsy.Dye@cflhomeless.org or posting them to our Facebook page: facebook.com/CoalitionfortheHomeless

CONNECT | June & July 2014  

Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida's June/July issue of CONNECT, featuring Jamie and Xavier's story.

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