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Reaching the Most Vulnerable – Thoughts on Low Barrier Services

Posted by on Nov 20, 2014 in Blog, Slider | 0 comments

Reaching the Most Vulnerable – Thoughts on Low Barrier Services

I was recently interviewed about our low barrier approach to services and thoughts the questions and responses might be of value to share with you. What does low-barrier mean? Are there any barriers that are set up and what would those be? Low barrier isn’t really rocket science. Virtually every business and government office has a low barrier approach without naming it as such. Basically, it means we have an open door policy. Anyone is welcome into our Center and can stay as long as they treat their fellow guests, the property, and the...

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IU Fraternity Raises Donations and Awareness for Shalom

Posted by on Oct 26, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

IU Fraternity Raises Donations and Awareness for Shalom

On Oct. 22, the Alpha Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi held a “Change for the Homeless” event to raise awareness and collect donations for the Bloomington homeless population. The fraternity camped outside IU’s Sample Gates from 6 am – 6 pm, and received donations of cash, winter wear, hygiene products and more. Kappa Alpha Psi also asked Bloomington residents who stopped by to discuss why making a change for the homeless was important to them. All donations will be sent to Shalom Community Center. Many thanks to the chapter...

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Veteran Homelessness

Posted by on Oct 24, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Veteran Homelessness

  “We’ve proven we can reduce veteran homelessness. Now, let’s end it” – Former Acting Secretary for Veterans’ Affairs Sloan Gibson Homelessness is a heart-wrenching problem in America- a country that believes in the idea anyone can ‘make it’. The issue of veteran homelessness should make this topic even more salient and prominent in our national consciousness. The idea that those who risk their lives in service to our country cannot find a place to live after their service is absolutely deplorable. Thankfully this...

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As Told by Me: Michale Williams’ Story of Success

Posted by on Oct 7, 2014 in Blog, Guest Story | 0 comments

As Told by Me: Michale Williams’ Story of Success

Tell us your story. I wasn’t homeless to start out, so I didn’t know Bloomington had help like Shalom. When I became homeless, I felt lost and didn’t know what to do—then people guided me in this direction. So it was rough for me when I started out, until I found Shalom. I became homeless after separating from a relationship. Then I lost my job, and remained homeless. I stayed that way for two years. During that time, I was looking for work while going to school at Ivy Tech, studying biotechnology and medical device manufacturing. My...

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They Aren’t Who You Think They Are

Posted by on Oct 2, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

They Aren’t Who You Think They Are

“Cuz these people aren’t who you think they are…”    Homeless individuals consistently face many constraints to getting the help they need. Some are pretty common, no matter what city they end up in – especially the stereotypes. So often, we as community members either consciously or subconsciously stereotype the homeless population. We assume the worst of people who are without a place to sleep – they didn’t work hard enough, they spent all of their money on drugs and alcohol, they have no ambition or desire to...

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Why We Do It: A Shalom Story of Success

Posted by on Sep 26, 2014 in Blog, Guest Story, Slider | 0 comments

Why We Do It: A Shalom Story of Success

“If Shalom was not here, [we] would still be homeless because it was the only place to turn to….you come in here and the littlest things help you get back on track.” After being laid off from work, Joe and Sabrina found themselves on hard times—no money, nowhere to be, and nowhere to live. They lost everything after entrusting Joe’s brother with money to pay the bills while they were out of town. When he spent the money on drugs, Joe and Sabrina were officially homeless. The couple spent almost two years living completely homeless....

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The World Is Your Living Room

Posted by on Jul 1, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

The World Is Your Living Room

Joel Rekas, the previous Executive Director of the Shalom Center, used to say, “When you’re homeless, the world is your living room. Would you want the world to see what you do in your living room?” People do many things in the privacy of their own homes that would get you arrested if you did them outside. Standing in one place Sitting down Lying down Sleeping Changing your clothes Urinating/Defecating Having sex Washing Making a mess Drinking alcohol/Using drugs Getting into an argument Existence is not a crime....

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Shalom Y’All

Posted by on May 9, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Shalom Y’All

If there is one thing that I learned through my internship at Shalom Community Center, it is that a group of people with big hearts, warm smiles, and a whole lot of passion and dedication can drastically make a difference in the lives of others. This has been exemplified through the tremendous hard work of a small numbered staff, countless hours of service from thousands of volunteers, endless support from caring donors, cooperation with local partner agencies, and dedication from a passionate Board of Directors. The love and determination...

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Three emergencies… three solutions… one week.

Posted by on May 7, 2014 in Blog, Slider | 0 comments

Three emergencies… three solutions… one week.

Three emergencies… three solutions… one week. In early May, within the course of a week, three of Shalom’s homeless clients were faced with significant challenges, which through our support, were overcome. On Saturday, a guest had a heart attack and emergency triple aortic bypass surgery. Uninsured, the hospital decided he was “healthy” enough to leave just 3 days later. Through enormous efforts by several of our staff and tremendous good fortune, we were able to get him a motel room on his first night of release and then through a...

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On the Occasion of a Graduation

Posted by on Apr 30, 2014 in Blog, Guest Story | 1 comment

On the Occasion of a Graduation

Mario Andretti once said, “Desire is the key to motivation and commitment to an unrelenting pursuit of your goal – a commitment to excellence – that will enable you to attain the success you seek.” Desire and motivation are what drove me to stick to my goals to finally acquire my GED. I had made a commitment to myself that I had failed at 11 years ago. I had had my whole life planned out my senior year of high school –graduate, go to college, get married and have kids. It’s the future plans of most high school students. It...

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