UCO’s Services

Urban Community Outreach – Mission Statement

To advance the interests and promote the welfare of the economically disenfranchised and homeless people in Long Beach by offering a welcoming environment to provide respite, nutrition, opportunity, and hope.

UCO seeks to fulfill its mission in several ways.  On Sundays from 12:30-4:00, we provide a community center for homeless people and the working poor in downtown Long Beach. We strive to provide a haven from the weather and the harsh conditions of the streets on Sunday afternoons.  On Sundays we serve a hot meal and we also provide:

  • Computer Lab provides access to the internet to find work, write resumes, find family or just surf the web. A ten workstation computer lab and helpful folks are available for anyone who may need assistance. The people will assist our guests with learning new computer skills (as time allows) in order to broaden their job opportunities. If you are talented in that area, we can use more volunteers.
  • Document Preservation Project offers an innovative solution for homeless people to scan and “back up” their important personal papers which often get lost, stolen or destroyed by the weather. We can send them to each person’s private e-mail account. Lost information can then be recovered at any time.
  • Doctor and Nurses come once a month. These dedicated volunteers monitor blood pressure, blood sugar and help with wound care. They provide what information and council our guests may need often addressing questions about depression, addiction issues and many other health concerns.
  • Supplies are provided including clothing, plastic tarps, blankets, sleeping bags, dehydrated food, hygiene kits, detergents and other items necessary to survive the hardship of living in the parks and on the streets.
  • Consultation with Outreach Workers: guests have the opportunity to talk with an experienced outreach worker to explain their particular needs and to be connected with resources needed to improve their situation.  Outreach workers keep in touch during the week to help clients with support, referrals to other organizations, temporary help with housing, transportation, and finding ways to help them stabilize their lives.

Our Wish List:

  • Personal Care Items: brushes/combs, wipes, swabs, men’s and women’s hygiene products, band aids, antibiotic cream, first aid items
  • Tiny Toiletries: Soaps, shampoo, toothpaste, vaseline, lotions, tooth brushes, razors, lip balm
  • Specific Clothing Items: Belts – large belts are hard to find, shoes and socks – all sizes, sweat pants, sweaters, sweatshirts, work pants (jeans and khaki’s) – all sizes
  • Important Miscellaneous Items: Books (hardback and paperback), current newspapers and magazines (please remove your name from any subscriptions), blankets, small rolls of toilet paper, suitcases with wheels, pull top canned foods for handing out, perishable foods to cook hot meals, and monetary gifts to support the work of UCO.

Urban Community Outreach administers a weather activated program which offers a place for adults to stay during harsh weather between October 1 and April 31st.

Between December 1st and March 1st if the Winter Shelter requires that everyone leave the premises by 7:00 am, no matter what the weather conditions are, that’s when UCO  steps in to provide shelter during the day.

UCO’s weather activated program provides support for homeless adults during the harsh weather March 1 through April 30. Food is also provided when the UCO weather activated program is operational.

Families are provided motel vouchers during inclement weather and also when working closely with UCO to better their condition while waiting for permanent housing.

The UCO weather activated shelter was previously operated by Long Beach Area Coalition for the Homeless and was known as the “Rainy Day Shelter”. UCO took over the program by a board vote on June 10, 2014, expanded and renamed the program Temporary Shelter and incorporated it into their services.  Click here to open a new page with the announcement letter from UCO Executive Director Arlene Mercer and Long Beach Area Coalition for the Homeless President Patricia Benoit.

Winter Shelter Program

From December 1 until March 1, the Winter Shelter provides emergency shelter for homeless people in Long Beach and San Pedro. This includes 140 beds to sleep in at night, breakfast and dinner, showers, toiletries, clothing and limited personal item storage.

People in need of shelter are picked up and dropped off at two locations in Long Beach and one in San Pedro. Click here to open a new page with the pick-up and drop off information.