As my previous blog post explains, homelessness is a significant problem in New York City. With over 60,000 homeless people in New York City, something clearly needs to be done about this issue. Luckily there are many non-profit organizations that specifically aim to help the homeless population in the city. The work that they do helps to ensure that these people are fed, have proper clothing and toiletries, and have a warm and safe place to sleep at night. There are even some charities that work to help homeless people get jobs! Below is a list of some of the work that charities in New York City are doing in order to help homeless New Yorkers.
The Coalition for the homeless is both an advocacy and direct service organization. The programs offers shelter, crisis services, youth programs, food, and job training while allowing volunteers to meet homeless people where they are. On the advocacy side, through impact litigation, research and analysis, public education and shelter monitoring, the Coalition is informed by the “very real daily struggles of our homeless neighbors, and seeks practical, human and cost-effective long-term solutions proven to work” (coalition for the homeless).
Win prides themselves on helping women and their children transform their lives through a progressive and holistic approach. Through their eight step program, Win offers a way out, not just a handout. The process starts with safe, clean housing for the woman and her child(ren). The next steps of the program are: child care and education, life skills, health and wellness, education, self-motivation, employment, and finally permanent housing.
The New York City Rescue Mission aims to provide help and hope to the hungry and homeless men and women of New York City. This organization provides food, shelter and services to those in need. One of the programs they offer is a 9-12 month inpatient recovery program. During this time, through individual and group work, participants will work on job readiness, life skills, nutrition, anger management, work therapy, relapse prevention, and physical fitness. The organization also has a Career and Learning center where residents improve their reading, writing, math, typing, software, and other skills. Additionally, once a week there is also a medical clinic available for those who need assistance.
Founded by two homeless people and continually organized by local homeless individuals, Picture the Homeless advocates for affordable housing and civil rights by offering free training in community activism and organization. Civil Rights: they believe that if you lose your house and chose to live in public spaces rather than go to a shelter that your constitutional and human rights should not be abused by the police. Housing: “It’s not a homeless crisis- it’s a housing crisis” (picturethehomeless.org)! Members have been pushing city legislation to help bring about affordable housing for those who can’t afford anything else. Education and training: Picture the Homeless offers education and training for employment and empowerment. On-site resources include technology and mail access, a legal clinic, referrals and networking opportunities, and organizing training.
The Doe Fund offers cost-effective and holistic programs that meet the needs of a diverse population working to break the cycle of homelessness, addiction, and criminal recidivism. The main program offered by the Doe Fund is transitional work and housing, case management, life skills, educational assistance, occupational training, job readiness, and graduate services to homeless and formerly incarcerated individuals. This organization also offers programs for veterans, low-income individuals and families, and those with a variety of challenges such as chronic homelessness, substance use, mental illness, HIV/AIDS, and chronic unemployment.