The press conference addressed the issue of homelessness in Broome County, and in particular, the “point-in-time” count and outreach being conducted today.
Rebecca Rathmell, Program Manager at the Rescue Mission and Community Awareness Committee Chair for the Coalition says, “This count is crucial in assessing not only the scope of homelessness locally, but trends, patterns, common causes, and community issues. In 2013, over 900 individuals experienced homelessness in our community, over 230 on any given night.”
Rescue Mission resident Doug Wunder shared his experience first-hand. “It is safe to say that I would not be standing here if it wasn’t for the people here at the Rescue Mission,” stated Doug, “and now I have the opportunity to come full circle and give back.” Doug is doing just that by eagerly participating in today’s outreach and count. To those who may find themselves where he did, Doug had this to say, “We all need help at some point in our lives. If you need help, I don’t see any shame in the game in saying that and getting help.”
Homelessness is a very real, very serious issue right here in our community. Davis College is excited to come alongside the Coalition and the Rescue Mission to help this winter through our “Hoops for the Homeless” Initiative. Hoops for the Homeless provides practical ways to get involved in one of three ways:
Supplies most needed include – Bottles of water/Gatorade, insulated socks, thermal underwear, gloves, hats, scarves, hand/feet warmers, ponchos, wipes, bus passes, granola bars (Cliff bars or similar preferred), and Ziploc bags.
2) Half-Time Half Court: Make a donation to the Rescue Mission at the game for the opportunity to try a half-court throw. Winning throws will receive a prize.
3) Service Day: The Davis College men’s and women’s basketball teams will be volunteering their time for a service day to help with needs at the Rescue Mission.
Special thanks to Mayor Rich David for his participation in today’s press conference, and many thanks to NewsChannel 34, WBNG Action News, and YNN for their coverage of the event.