Project Homeless Connect in El Cajon helps grow self esteem
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Dozens of organizations, including volunteers, teamed up today in El Cajon for the East County “version” of Project Homeless Connect.
The scene looked familiar….only the “venue” was smaller. Every year, soon after the County’s annual homeless count, we cover the one-day, Project Homeless Connect, offering an array of services at Golden Hall in downtown San Diego.
Well, El Cajon has the County’s second largest homeless population. So we were at the Ronald Reagan Community Center, for the East County version. More than 35 organizations, headed by the lead organizer, Crisis House.
Same idea, health care, mental health counseling, addiction services, aid in finding a job and housing assistance. We’ll get to grooming in a moment because the housing situation, with the East County’s more limited resources than San Diego’s, doesn’t have the three bridge shelters the City has.
So Crisis House has partnered with the City of El Cajon on an intiative called Rapid Rehousing.
Crisis House Executive Director Mary Case telling KUSI, “It’s essentially getting people off the streets into permanent support housing by giving them a deposit, first month’s rent. Also subsidies and support such as case management to maintain their housing.”
But for the array of services available, the one that seems to bring the most smiles is grooming, involving students at local hair styling and beauty schools.
It was Kelly’s (homeless) first stop. She’s been homeless for two years, she wants a job. However, this is also very much about self-esteem.
When we talked with her about the latter, she including the County in her praise, that the people assisting her had been gracious and non-judgemental.