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Adopt-a-Bed Matching Campaign

Posted by on May 24, 2016 in Blog, Slider | 0 comments

Adopt-a-Bed Matching Campaign

For a short time, any gift you make to support Friend’s Place shelter will be doubled. Please adopt-a-bed today (more info below) to keep the shelter alive long into the future! To donate, click here (and note Friend’s Place in the special instructions). It was that close. Arguably the most important homeless shelter in Bloomington almost closed forever. In the Spring of 2015, Martha’s House, Inc. went bankrupt, putting at risk the only year-round, nonreligious, emergency shelter for homeless adults in a 7 county region. Over...

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Send a Message of Love to Counter the Hate

Posted by on Aug 31, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Send a Message of Love to Counter the Hate

UPDATE: You have done it!! Between community arts grants and your support, we have successfully funded the project. Thank YOU so much for making this possible!! It’s hard to believe, but it’s been 5 years since we moved into our home at 620 S Walnut St. To celebrate, let’s not just acknowledge the day, but send a message to our community!! …that Love is stronger than hate… that Dignity is greater than discrimination. Let’s offer a lasting marker to the community of the values you have supported not just...

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Should You Give Money to People Who Are Panhandling?

Posted by on Jun 10, 2015 in Blog, Slider | 0 comments

Should You Give Money to People Who Are Panhandling?

People often ask me, “Should I give money to people who are panhandling?” The urge to give is a good one.  Please feel proud of your desire to give.  Generosity starts with the heart, and the desire to give reflects one of our greatest human values – compassion (literally “to feel with” another). But as a person of good heart, I am sure you often ask yourself, “What is the best way to be generous?” To give someone money on the street is ultimately a personal decision with pros and cons to whichever choice you make. On the...

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Everyone’s Story Matters

Posted by on Mar 26, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Everyone’s Story Matters

IU Journalism students working on semester-long storytelling project for Shalom Since January, six Indiana University students have been documenting client stories for Shalom as part of a semester-long storytelling project for Professor Sarah Neal Estes’ class, ‘Radio Innovation.’ “In this class, we tell audio stories in nontraditional ways,” Estes explained. “Students report for our local NPR affiliate and challenge themselves to work at professional level, or they challenge themselves in certain new...

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Community Mourns the Passing of Those Who Have Experienced Homelessness

Posted by on Dec 31, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Community Mourns the Passing of Those Who Have Experienced Homelessness

On December 22nd at the First United Church, members of the Bloomington community gathered to honor the lives of those who have experienced homelessness and died in the past year. Shalom’s Executive Director, Rev. Forrest Gilmore, said in the opening words, “The tragedy of American homelessness is a national disgrace. On this night, we gather to recognize the fatalities of this national wound.” Rev. Bruce Ervin of First Christian Church who offered the homily spoke to people without homes directly: “I know God is...

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The Heart-stirring Power of Partnership

Posted by on Dec 24, 2014 in Blog, Slider | 1 comment

The Heart-stirring Power of Partnership

Last winter, I came across a man at the eastside Barnes & Noble’s. Matted hair, torn and dirty clothing, an unshaven face, he had the distinct look of a chronically homeless person. He cast an aura of kindness but also extreme privacy. I caught a vibe of fragility and a touch of fear. So, I let him be. I learned later that he had been sleeping at the local Laundromat and spent the days in bookstores and fast food restaurants. No one knew him and he wasn’t using any services. I spoke with the PATH caseworkers from Centerstone to see if...

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Access for the Deserving (and Undeserving)

Posted by on Dec 24, 2014 in Blog | 1 comment

Access for the Deserving (and Undeserving)

This piece was written by one of our newest Board members, Ross Martinie Eiler. Ross is also a founding member of the Bloomington Catholic Worker Christian Radical community. Homelessness and poverty are a problem in Bloomington. This is not new. What is relatively new, however, is the strategy of addressing poverty by pushing the poor out of sight. Some recent examples include taking out benches by the public library, installing anti-homeless planters at the courthouse, arresting those sleeping in parking garages. The message remains the...

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Reaching the Most Vulnerable – Thoughts on Low Barrier Services

Posted by on Nov 20, 2014 in Blog | 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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Off the Streets: Our 2020 Vision to Combat Homelessness

Posted by on Nov 7, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Off the Streets: Our 2020 Vision to Combat Homelessness

On November 6, we announced our 2020 strategic plan to tackle homelessness in Bloomington. More than 150 people gathered in the Fountain Square Ballroom to support the event, led by President of the Board John Hamilton and Shalom Executive Director Forrest Gilmore. In brief, our 2020 Vision is as follows: 1.) End chronic homelessness. 2.) End homelessness for children and families. 3.) Reduce the need for emergency shelter by 50 percent. John opened the night by welcoming guests and updating them on Shalom’s work this past year. He then...

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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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