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A Look at Hunger in Our Neighborhood

As one of our generous supporters, you affect the lives of the more than 350 people who visit our Food Centre every day. We depend upon you to serve the hungry in the Minneapolis area.

Despite the improved economy, hunger and the need for meals every day has increased. We have served almost 2000 more people so far this year than we did in 2014. Thirty-nine percent of the 6,769 individuals served so far in 2015 said the lunch provided by House of Charity’s Food Centre was their only meal of the day.

Through a continuing partnership with Second Harvest Heartland, a Minneapolis-based food bank, just 50¢ provides a hot nutritious meal for an individual through our Food Centre.

Tanks to your support, we make sure everyone who comes to the Food Centre receives the nourishment they need.

HOC graphic, meals per day

Article from our Fall “Beats” Newsletter

Hunger Action month: Double your impact!

We have served 2,000 more meals so far this year compared to 2014!

Despite the improvements in our economy, House of Charity has witnessed an increased need for our free public meal program at our Food Centre.

Sounds like love.” Daisy Rose says about the atmosphere at the Food Centre. Sometimes the meal at the Food Centre is her only meal that day. “I’m comfortable with the amount of food and am very thankful.”

Daisy Rose was a nurse for 19 years, but her MS symptoms worsened and she could no longer work. Living on a fixed income, she is a regular at the Food Centre as she often doesn’t have enough to buy food after bills are paid.

HOC graphic, Mosaic donations 2015

So, lucky for you (and our diners!), Mosaic will now match your donation!

When surveyed in February 2015, 39% of our Food Centre diners stated that the meal they received is likely the only food they will consume that day.  Just like Daisy Rose, that means 136 or more diners, out of our average 350 diners, would have gone without food for the day.

Our Free Public Meal at the Food Centre is funded entirely from donations from people like you! The food expense to feed one person is $0.50. So, for example, $25.00 will feed 50 people.

The Mosaic Company has renewed their challenge match. So every new and increased donation will be matched.

Now, a donation of $25.00 will feed 100 people thanks to you and Mosaic!

Double your impact with our matching gift opportunity,
provided by:

 

 

Mosaic logo

 

House of Charity Heart, to give, contribute, feed, house, empower with a heart of charity

House of Charity is Expanding!

With more permanent supportive housing with case management services to address each person’s barriers to maintaining housing, the more people will be independent and no longer homeless,” said Bert Winkel.

When a person is placed into permanent supportive housing it opens up a bed in transitional housing, which opens up a bed at a homeless shelter, which then takes one more person off street.”

House of Charity Purchases Finance and Commerce Property

Minneapolis, Minnesota (April 22, 2015) – House of Charity is pleased to announce the purchase of the Finance and Commerce property at 615 South 7th Street, Minneapolis. The property is adjacent to the House of Charity Food Centre located at 714 Park Avenue South. The partners in this purchase include the Twin Cities Community Land Bank and Community Housing Development Corporation.

The purchase is the springboard for much needed expansion of House of Charity. “The lack of affordable, permanent supportive housing continues to be a barrier for the homeless population we serve at House of Charity,” said Bert Winkel, Executive Director. “In order for our organization to continue to meet the needs of people experiencing long-term homelessness in the community, we must expand.”

The new development project includes a five story building with a new Food Centre space, expanded Day by Day Outpatient Recovery Program, and administrative offices on the first and second floors. Floors three through five will have 65 new Permanent Supportive Housing studio apartments for long-term homeless single adults. The building will include a large private deck on the 5th floor for the residents and off-sidewalk queueing space for Food Centre guests.

House of Charity will be seeking tax credit funding through Low-Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) with construction optimally set to begin in spring 2016.

Affordable housing paired with supportive services is a proven strategy that increases housing stability. In Minneapolis and around the state, there is a shortage of permanent supportive housing options for people ready to make the next step toward self-sufficiency and independence.

 

A combination of low vacancy rates, low wages, and a lack of funding in Minneapolis has created one of the worst affordable rental shortages in more than a decade for low-income renters.”
(MinnPost: “Minneapolis renters face huge affordable-housing shortage,” 01/14/14)

Increased unemployment, stagnated wages and home foreclosures from the Great Recession added more people to the growing homeless population and added to the waiting lists for permanent supportive and affordable housing, while rental prices increased.”
(MinnPost: “Minneapolis renters face huge affordable-housing shortage,” 01/14/14)

In Hennepin County, for every 100 extremely low-income renters there are now 34 units that are affordable and available.”
(National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) 
analysis of CHAS data, 2006-10)

House of Charity Heart, to give, contribute, feed, house, empower with a heart of charity

Wells Fargo Food Center Volunteer Profile

Several years ago, Kip was introduced to the House of Charity Food Centre through a volunteer opportunity with his employer, Wells Fargo. The experience volunteering at House of Charity, combined with Kip’s long-time passion for giving back to the community, led him to build a team of his colleagues to begin serving on a monthly basis.

 

Kip was drawn to the organization because, in his words, “They have their doors wide open” to the public.  Additionally, one reason Kip has continued volunteering at the Food Centre is the structure. He states, “It gives people a good meal and a safe place to eat it.” In his interactions with the people at the Food Centre, Kip explains that recipients of meals are always very polite and appreciative.

 

Kip also explained that as volunteers, “you are ambassadors to the organization.” He challenges volunteers to get to know the other volunteers with whom they serve and to develop a sense of community. Kip explains, “As volunteers, we get as much out of the experience of serving, as we put into it.”

Instilling Hope One to Another

A Compilation of Stories & Experiences from Food Centre Guests

CJ: When CJ first came to the Food Centre she was homeless and looking for community resources. CJ knew that she needed to do something positive to get out of the lifestyle she was in, so she started school at MCTC and began volunteering at the Food Centre. CJ does anything and everything at the Food Centre, from greeting people to cleaning up, but she especially enjoys talking with others, “I just want to make the people who come here feel welcome and have hope in their lives.” CJ also makes sure that children and the disabled get their meals. Now, CJ is still in school, majoring in Addiction Counseling, has her own apartment, and volunteers and eats at the Food Centre on a regular basis. She is very appreciative of the support she has received from the Food Centre staff and hopes to further her involvement with House of Charity, perhaps as a Day by Day treatment program intern.

Daisy Rose: “Sounds like Love,” Daisy Rose says about the Food Centre. Sometimes the meal at the Food Centre is her only meal that day. “I’m comfortable with the amount of food and very thankful.” Daisy Rose was a nurse for 19 years, but her MS symptoms worsened and she could no longer work. When she lost her job in 2011, Daisy Rose spent her 401K on living and medical expenses. In addition to dining with us, she volunteers her time at the Food Centre; she likes everyone, knows people, and says it’s consistent with her upbringing: “we all work together.” She’s one of the regulars who helps Walter, a paraplegic guest, to eat lunch and notes that she is very grateful for House of Charity.

The Tiger Family- Julie, Nate, Daniel, & Baby: When Nate lost his job last spring in Duluth, the family was devastated financially and they quickly lost their apartment. They came to Burnsville to stay with family, but that was an alcoholic and abusive place where people directed their anger towards four year old Daniel. So, the family camped out this summer, in their van and area parks. They’ve had to resort to Nate staying at a men’s shelter while Julie and the kids live at a family shelter to save money and find jobs. Daniel likes the meat and cheeses at the Food Centre and most of all he loves meeting his friend Claire at the weekend brunch. Julie commented, “It’s great to be with other people who’ve been humbled by the world.” Julie is hopeful that by winter, both she and Nate will have jobs and a place to call home.