On Tuesday, February 7, 2017, our class went to Columbus House in New Haven. For those of you who do not know, Columbus House is a shelter that has 81 beds for single homeless men and women. The shelter opened its doors in 1982 and has been providing services and giving hope to people in need since.
One of the services that the Columbus House has is its Outreach & Engagement program, which provides services to clients by going to where they are currently living. Some of the of the people who are homeless refuse to be in a shelter. Sometimes they do not feel comfortable going into an unknown place.
The staff at the shelter are doing their best, considering they might not get as much funding as they usually do. I am amazed at everything the Columbus House does, but the best is the fact that they help people find permanent housing.
I’m touched when I think about how the Columbus House finds permanent housing, because my family was once on the brink of being homeless. We went through so much to try and keep our housing, but in the end, it did not work out. We were able to find an apartment that we can afford but not a day goes by that I don’t think about our path going another way.
Not many people realize that not every homeless person is there because of drugs or alcohol. Many people who become homeless are homeless because they were trying live on wages that did help them survive. After going to the shelter, I know that I want to do the most that I can to help anyone that may need it.
I understand what it means to feel helpless and I want to help those that are in the same position. To volunteer your time please click here.
By Arnelle Pierre-Louis