12th and Peeples
Running the camp has been a wild and beautiful experience. We have met people that will be a permanent part of Help Right Here. It’s been an incredible experience to watch a community form and it’s been a blessing to be a part of it. We have had 132 residents inside our fence. Forty have gone into housing since we opened.
We have learned so much during this time with our residents. One of the biggest things we’ve learned is to listen. There are many layers to homelessness. We don’t know what they know or what they’ve learned on the streets, but we do know that they need love and support. So we started listening to residents and asked a couple residents who were housed and thriving for their input and help in supporting our camp residents. We quickly saw how effective it was to have peer support within the camp. We started brainstorming and with the help of the Homeless Coalition, THFA, CPD and others, are creating a job, calling them Homeless Peer Support Specialists. We hope to help create a valuable, paid position from within the homeless community that will help us learn and help the homeless stay housed.
We’ve also learned that tents are not long term solutions. Our weather is just too harsh. The storms and heat and below freezing temperatures make tents almost useless. There is constant repair and replacement. Their belongings are still not truly safe and it’s really hard to be nice when you’re outside in constant heat and cold. Check out our Village section to learn more about our solution to this problem.