Lake Elsinore tackles homelessness with second Homeless Outreach Community Coalition meeting

The city of Lake Elsinore will hold its second Homeless Outreach Community Coalition meeting Thursday, Feb. 8, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., at the Lake Elsinore Cultural Arts Center, 183 N. Main St., in Lake Elsinore.

The purpose of the coalition is to bring the community together to collaborate on how to best serve the homeless population throughout southwest Riverside County.

“At this next meeting we seek to drill down to the various barriers of homelessness to find out from the audience what and how they address these barriers,” Lake Elsinore Senior Management Analyst Nicole Dailey said. “The hope is to allow collaboration and the sharing of knowledge among all of those who serve and provide assistance to those in need.”

During the meeting, the coalition hopes to begin to assess available resources and identify gaps in services as well as create and efficient and effective network of resources and agencies, while educating each other in regard to best practices to help those in need.

“In addition, we will be seeking insight from these groups about how the city, their organization and or multiple organizations can come together and what ideas we should consider to address these same challenges such as housing ideas, job training ideas, just to name a few,” Dailey said.

Other issues to be discussed include tackling local challenges related to homelessness such as feeding, housing, behaviorally health, addiction and support.

“Finally, we will share what we have discovered and learned in the last three months to help empower these organizations to do more with less this includes things like fee waivers for ID cards, health care company support and grant opportunities,” Dailey said.

According to Dailey, the city of Lake Elsinore is committed to bringing together all local resources to collaborate and address these challenges.

“Overall, our goal is to be able to help those in need in the right ways at the right time,” she said. “We want to uncover and overcome common barriers together with those who are working hard day in and day out to make a difference in their lives.”

In the last five months since the city began looking into available options to help the homeless, it has had 25 requests for assistance, Dailey said.

“This is incredible to me,” she said, adding that while statistics are not yet available, the city has been able to help those requesting assistance. “Just this week we placed one 23-year-old male into an emergency shelter, connected him with the military to enlist and providing the help he needed with addiction. He is on his way, and we are hopeful he will continue his journey.”

The city is seeking any interested private, nonprofit, religious organizations, governmental agencies or individuals who are willing to join its efforts to find lasting, real solutions for our area’s homeless by giving them “a hand up rather than a hand out.”

For more information and to RSVP, send an email with the organization’s name and contact information including the type of services specialized in and offer to [email protected] as soon as possible.

“We expect that many groups will walk away with  new ideas and opportunities to break down their barriers,” Dailey said.

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