We believe that supportive and mutually enriching relationships are a key to ending the cycle of homelessness. There are many factors that enter into homelessness, such as job loss, physical or mental disability, domestic violence, mental illness, drug and alcohol addiction, and others. But one important factor that is frequently overlooked is the breakdown of relationships and community that occurs when people become homeless. People don't become homeless when they run out of money, at least not right away. They become homeless when they run out of relationships. And this means that the solution to homelessness necessarily involves a reestablishment of relationships and community.
People experiencing and transitioning out of homelessness need many things: food, clothing, shelter, employment. But what they need perhaps more than anything else are healthy, positive, and supportive relationships that can literally make the difference between staying housed or becoming homeless again. Formerly homeless people who do not have a community of support surrounding them are often unable to sustain themselves in their housing—they may sink into depression after being housed, return to unhealthy relationships, addictions, or other coping mechanisms, and eventually spiral out of housing and back into homelessness.
New City Initiative seeks to end this cycle by building networks of supportive relationships that can help formerly homeless people develop their gifts, overcome their challenges, and become stable and contributing members of the community. Congregations can become part of the solution by completing our six-week curriculum on building community and getting involved in one of our programs.
Healthy Sisters By Susanna Rempel, Associate Director Healthy Sisters has been a part of New City’s work since the summer of 2012. Over the last four years, 14 volunteer drive...