Thank you to the Cal State Long Beach Circle K members and other volunteers who helped Chef Melody with multiple tasks during our busy morning.
Also, thank you to HOPE (Homeless Outreach Promoting Empathy) volunteers and Dr. Sophia Momand for providing medical assessments, toiletry kits, clothing and other much-appreciated items to our guests. Dr. Sophia and HOPE from Cal State Dominguez Hills have been volunteering monthly at UCO for over 5 years.
Dr. Sophia expressed great concern that several of the clients she saw today required immediate medical procedures, such as surgery, that she knows will not occur.
I met with numerous clients and discussed their needs and where they were in the quest for housing and shelter. A few needed bus fare to return to their shelter beds, while others requested bus fare to this week’s medical appointments. Six people were in need of help to acquire ID’s from the DMV and so many appreciated the fruit and other foods made available to take with them.
One mother who came in with her 7 year-old daughter and 11 year-old son was full of fear and hopelessness – they had no where to go for the night. UCO provided a motel stay in order for the children to be ready to return to school the next day and the mom to go to the multi-service center to request assistance on Monday morning. The little girl recently had her bag of clothes stolen and only had the clothes she was wearing (her school uniform). She had remarked that she “had to keep wearing the same clothes” since having her bag stolen. She beamed when I gave her two used white polo shirts.
The hardest part of my days is controlling my worry for the children who are experiencing homelessness in our community.