Local outreach programs offer food, shelter to the homeless (Pasadena City College Courier)

Local outreach programs offer food, shelter to the homeless

During the winter season Pasadena gets cold at night, especially for those without a home. Several local outreach programs offer emergency shelters and other services for those looking for a place to sleep and eat.

The outreach program at Pasadena Covenant Church at 539 N. Lake Avenue offers an emergency shelter in collaboration with Friends in Deed (FID), an interfaith collaborative of different churches in the Pasadena area that’s dedicated to meeting the needs of the homeless and at-risk individuals.

“PasCov hosts the shelter in our gym,” said Vikki Randall, a pastor for the church. “Area churches share responsibilities to send volunteers and provide dinner.”

The Bad Weather shelter was activated on Nov. 27 and will be open during nights when the temperature is below 40 degrees or there is a 40 percent chance of rain. The emergency shelter will operate to until the end of February.

According to Randall, anyone who is looking for a place to stay for the night is welcome. There is no discrimination based on race, sexual orientation or disability.

“There’s a check in and they will have a cot,” said Kim Dorman, a member of Pasadena Covenant Church.

The emergency shelter opens at 8 p.m. and those that do go also receive dinner, which includes a meat dish, salad, bread, and desert. The shelter is staffed with professionals who have experience working with the homeless and mentally ill. A nurse is provided on-site to give flu shots and health evaluations.

The check out time is 6 a.m. to 6:30 am.

For those looking for more services, the Union Station Homeless Services offers a variety of outreach programs.

Since 1973, Union Station Homeless Services has served the poor and homeless population of Pasadena. Located on Raymond Avenue, the hospitality center offers services for at-risk individuals and families.

The Family Center offers shelter, meals and health services to parents and children. There is also an Adult Shelter for individuals looking for a nutritious meal and housing. Housing for both centers are on a first come, first served basis.

Union Station Homeless Services also offers permanent, supportive housing.

The center, along with Pasadena Covenant Church and 40-plus other social service agencies throughout the San Gabriel Valley, are working on ending homelessness in the area by 2016.

The Coordinated Entry System (CES) program finds housing for those that are chronically homeless with the goal of housing the most vulnerable first.

“This is an important and worthy goal, and one we are progressing towards steadily,” said Randall. “But it will take time—a lot of time—to house the 600 some homeless in Pasadena (at last census). So in the meantime we need the emergency shelter.”

Pasadena Covenant Church’s emergency shelter will be open on Christmas Eve for “Christmas at the Shelter” where they will provide a full holiday dinner.

The hotline for the Bad Weather Shelter is 1-888-915-8111.

The number for the Adult Center front desk is (626) 791-6610.

Connect Online: