Thursday, September 18, 2014

Going home

September 18, 2014

In this edition

Introducing Delilah VanCourt
Shelter Manager at Sophia's Place
Linda has a home to call her own
And how it came about
Eight women moving to independent housing
What you made possible!
Reserve your place for our Luncheon, Oct 30
Stories that bring us together
A Home for the Homeless
The difference you are making in the lives of women in need

Introducing Delilah VanCourt, Shelter Manager at Sophia's Place.

I have been enjoying my role as Shelter Manager at Sophia's Place since I began at the end of July. When I stepped into Sophia's Place, I was struck by the huge difference in feel from that of other shelters I have worked in, particularly in comparison to Seattle shelters. I like that the women have a cubicle to themselves and the personal touches offered such as donated homemade quilts on the beds, a welcome basket with necessities given at move-in (donated from a volunteer group), and a wide network of meal donors who provide a home cooked meal nightly set the program apart from others and set a welcoming tone.
  
I have a long work history of working on homelessness, including work with Compass Housing Alliance (CHA), Catholic Community Services (CCS), and Seattle Mental Health (SMH). After getting both my Bachelor's and a Master's degree in Social Work, for 15 years I have worked in various capacities including women's advocate, residential counselor, case manager, therapy facilitator, and so on. I live in Tukwila with my husband Charlie, 3 month old daughter Violet, and our orange tabby cat named Butterfinger.
 
I have a strong passion for providing services to homeless women and have always found this work most moving and rewarding. My beliefs include treating all people with dignity and in a way that empowers people to build upon their strengths to make the connections needed to be safe, content, and fulfilled. I appreciate that your support is providing much needed services on the Eastside and operating a beautiful shelter. I think that the team of case managers, the Interim ED, office staff, and shelter workers all provide a wide array of expertise and a willingness to work together towards fulfilling the mission of The Sophia Way. Since joining the team here, I have been continually impressed by the community contributions and volunteer efforts that serve the agency. I am excited to be a part of The Sophia Way during this time of re-definition and look forward to the work ahead.

Delilah VanCourt
Shelter Manager, Sophia's Place

Linda has a home to call her own
But that didn't come easy

To respect the privacy of our client, all identifiable information, including her name, has been changed for this story.

Linda had more than 4 episodes of experiencing homelessness in the past three years. The last one lasted for more than a year. That was a very long one year for Linda as she struggled to find stability. She was planning to rent a room from someone prior to coming to The Sophia Way. As luck would have it, that person turned abusive and she did not feel safe. She managed to sleep on couches until she entered our program.

While in our program, Linda received case management. She utilized many other services that we were able to provide. Finally, just a few weeks back, Linda was able to move from the shelter into her own apartment! She did a lot of the foot work on her own. She diligently made phone calls, rode the bus to many different appointments and never gave up. Her persistence paid off. She was very concerned that she would not have enough money for her very first month's rent. The Sophia Way was able to provide a check to her apartment to cover the remaining balance. She was so grateful! We also were able to provide her with towels, blankets, and a few other household goods, thanks to generous donors, to welcome her into her new apartment. We all wish her the very best!

Eight women moving to independent housing
How August turned out to be an exceptional month for our clients


August was an exceptional month for us. A total of eight women in our program, people like Linda, from Sophia's Place and from Holly House, are moving out to independent housing! Five women received the word that they would be eligible for housing through Section 8, provided by King County Housing authority with federal funds. Another three women qualified for affordable housing and are moving out of our program as well.
 

We are thrilled and excited about the future of these women! As they move to independent housing from our program, we will be able to serve more women in need, through our shelters and transitional housing programs. Your support made this possible. Thank you!

Stories that bring us together
The Sophia Way Annual Benefit Luncheon on Thursday, Oct 30th

Registration is now up and running for our upcoming Annual Benefit Luncheon. We hope you are able to join us with your friends, family, and coworkers in support of our mission to assist women from homelessness to independence. Feel free to share the invite widely and register early to reserve your place! For more information about the Luncheon, visit our event page.

TSW Luncheon 2014 

The mission of The Sophia Way is to help end homelessness for adult women in King County by providing shelter, life skills training, social services and supportive permanent housing, offering a path from homelessness to stable independent living.

 

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The Sophia Way is supported by United Way of King County