Note From Our Executive Director
In March, we boldly said yes to launching three new 24/7 operations, increasing our staff by 50%, and delivering 20x more essential services like food and shelter than ever before. We served a record-breaking 1,795 through our drop-in services, emergency shelter and hotel operations, eviction prevention support, and housing programs. We have also helped move nearly 100 people into stable housing – including 20 households in the month of September alone!
As Connections moves into the next phase of our COVID-Response, there are many uncertainties, but one thing we are absolutely committed to: we are not scaling back. On October 1, Connections resumed drop-in services at Hilda’s Place located on the lower level of Lake Street Church. Participants have access to showers, laundry, computers, a food pantry, clothing closet, bagged lunches, and case management during their visit. Our Dewey Ave. drop-in remains open as well, providing neighbors a handicapped-accessible option for emergency food support, showers, clothing, and case management. Drop-in services continue to serve as an entry point for many participants to connect to housing and shelter. The majority of our hotel operations have been consolidated to one location with a congregate shelter space to accommodate more participants. Earlier this fall, we opened a second site for our youth transitional housing program in partnership with Alderman Robin Rue Simmons, and are increasing our youth programming further as a result of an award through the Youth Homelessness Demonstration Project (YHDP).
The expanded operations cost an additional $8,000 each day and have led to a $3 million – and growing – investment into the local economy through rent to local landlords, meals purchased from area restaurants, staff wages to Evanston-based employees, and hotel costs. Our COVID-response efforts have shown us that our vision to make homelessness rare, brief, and non-recurring is within our grasp; ending homelessness truly is possible, but we can’t do it alone. We know you stand with us and share our vision. Learn how you can support our work now on our COVID-19 Crisis Support Page.
Betty A. Bogg
Read Connections' Daily Activity Log
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In the News:
March 18th Chicago Tribune Article
March 25th Evanston Patch Article
March 25th Evanston Round Table Article
March 30th The Daily Northwestern Article
April 14th Chicago Tribune Article
April 15th Evanston Patch Article
May 11th Chicago Tribune Article
May 15th Evanston Round Table Article
May 28th Evanston Round Table Article
July 27th Evanston Now Article
August 3 Evanston Now Article
March 2020 Press Release
April 2020 Press Release
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Learn how you can support us right now by visiting our COVID-19 Crisis Support page.