Friday, December 26, 2008

LAST NIGHT OF SEVERE WEATHER!

Friday December 26th is the last night for emergency warming centers in Portland! The Four Square Church and Estate will no longer be open as warming centers beginning Saturday December 27th. Please plan accordingly and spread the word! For updated information please continue to call 211 Info by dialing 2-1-1 from landlines or (503) 721-1500 from cell phones. The hotline hours have been extended this year so you can reach someone until 10pm.

The Following Shelters Will Remain Available:

Family-Focused Seasonal Warming Center
Available for families with children under 18 only!
1435 NE 81st Avenue, Portland
(Behind the former Elmers restaurant at NE 82nd and Halsey, just off of the NE 82nd Max Line stop)
seven nights a week throughout winter season
7:00 PM - 7:00 AM

Transition Projects Warming Center
475 NW Glisan (directly behind the Greyhound Station at the corner of NW 5th and Glisan). (503) 823-4934 (24-hours).
The Transition Projects warming center will be open seven nights a week regardless of weather conditions from Thursday December 18th through March 31 2009! To access the warming center: Sign up daily at Transition Projects starting at 7:00PM. The actual warming cenbter is a short walk from Transition Projects. A light snack and hot drinks will be available. The Warming Center will be open 8PM to 7AM daily. The Warming Center is open to adults, including couples. (There are separate sleeping areas for men and women with a common area for socializing.) Please note: There are stairs and no elevator available, no smoke breaks or smoking in the center, no animals allowed, and no carts!

For more information please contact 211 Info:
(503) 721-1500 or dial 2-1-1 from landlines
Monday through Friday 8am-10pm
& Saturday and Sunday 10am-10pm.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

SEVERE WEATHER UPDATE!

It's cold out there! Severe Weather conditions are expected to continue through the weekend and the City of Portland has announced that warming centers will remain open at least through Monday morning December 22. The easiest way to figure out what is available is by calling 211 Info by dialing 2-1-1 from landlines or (503) 721-1500 from cell phones. The hotline hours have been extended this year so you can reach someone until 10pm.

WARMING CENTERS:

In addition to year-round shelters and winter shelters, the City of Portland now offers Severe Weather Warming Centers organized by volunteers of the Red Cross. Warming Centers only provide a mat on the floor and a blanket. No food, coffee, or other services are provided provided. The expectation for couples is that they will sleep close to each other on mats but not together.

Family-Focused Seasonal Warming Center
Available for families with children under 18 only!
1435 NE 81st Avenue, Portland
(Behind the former Elmers restaurant at NE 82nd and Halsey, just off of the NE 82nd Max Line stop)
seven nights a week throughout winter season
7:00 PM - 7:00 AM

Red Cross Warming Center at the Portland Foursquare Church
1302 Ankeny St. (near 13th in Inner SE), Portland
Available during Severe Weather only!
9:00 PM - 7:00 AM
Serves: Families, couples, single adults, and youth; Pets allowed; some space for carts; disability accessible location (main floor).

Red Cross Warming Center at Central City Concern's Estate Hotel
225 NW Couch
Available during Severe Weather only!
9:00 PM - 7:00 AM
Serves: Families, couples, single adults, and youth. Pets allowed; some space for carts; disability accessible location (elevator).

Transition Projects Warming Center
475 NW Glisan (directly behind the Greyhound Station at the corner of NW 5th and Glisan). (503) 823-4934 (24-hours).
The Transition Projects warming center will be open seven nights a week regardless of weather conditions from Thursday December 18th through March 31 2009! To access the warming center: Sign up daily at Transition Projects starting at 7:00PM. The actual warming cenbter is a short walk from Transition Projects. A light snack and hot drinks will be available. The Warming Center will be open 8PM to 7AM daily. The Warming Center is open to adults, including couples. (There are separate sleeping areas for men and women with a common area for socializing.) Please note: There are stairs and no elevator available, no smoke breaks or smoking in the center, no animals allowed, and no carts!

YOUTH UNDER 21:

PORCHLIGHT CRISIS SHELTER
Porchlight Crisis Shelter is the city's only emergency youth shelter for young people under 21 years of age. During severe weather, Porchlight has the capacity to provide a few additional beds on a first-come-first-served basis (6 extra beds for a total of 36 guests). Youth with BLA’s from shelter should be encouraged to speak to shelter supervisor (Ken Kerr) during hazardous weather conditions. There may be instances in which non-violent BLA’s can be waived for safety on a case-by-case basis. Please note that Porchlight staff will not waive BLA’s, youth must speak with Ken Kerr directly. Porchlight staff prioritizes safety and will only accommodate additional youth when doing so does not create an unsafe environment. Porchlight does not have the ability to accommodate pets.

WOMEN ONLY

Salvation Army Female Emergency Shelter (S.A.F.E.)
1136 SW 11th
(503) 227-8681
Space for 12 additional single women via mats on the floor in the day space during severe weather. Day space open 7am to 11pm daily. Shelter open 7:45pm to 7:00 am daily. No pets or carts. Not disability accessible due to steep stairs.

DAY SERVICES:

Expanded severe weather Day Shelter may also be available at Portland Rescue Mission or Salvation Army, depending on weather severity and as staffing permits. Contact sites directly to inquire about Day Time Access. St. Francis, Julia West/Daywatch, and S.A.F.E. Shelter all operate Day Service for adults year round. New Avenues for Youth & Outside In offer Day Services for youth under 21 year round.

TRANSPORTATION:

Yellow Brick Road and Can We Help often provide Severe Weather Transportation in an effort to get as many people indoors as possible. Transportation is generally available during severe weather from 6pm-10pm but always call 211 first to confirm availability!

For more information please contact 211 Info:
(503) 721-1500 or dial 2-1-1 from landlines
Monday through Friday 8am-10pm
& Saturday and Sunday 10am-10pm.

Friday, December 12, 2008

SEVERE WEATHER EXPECTED THROUGH THE WEEKEND!

Severe Weather conditions are expected to begin in the Portland area on the night of Saturday December 13 and are likely to continue until the morning of Wednesday December 17. The easiest way to figure out what is available during severe weather is by calling 211 Info by dialing 2-1-1 from landlines or (503) 721-1500 from cell phones. The hotline hours have been extended this year (see below).
WARMING CENTERS:

In addition to year-round shelters and winter shelters, the City of Portland now offers Severe Weather Warming Centers organized by volunteers of the Red Cross. Warming Centers only provide a mat on the floor and a blanket. No food, coffee, or other services are provided provided. The expectation for couples is that they will sleep close to each other on mats but not together.

Family-Focused Seasonal Warming Center
Available for families with children under 18 only!
1435 NE 81st Avenue, Portland
(Behind the former Elmers restaurant at NE 82nd and Halsey, just off of the NE 82nd Max Line stop)
seven nights a week throughout winter season
7:00 PM - 7:00 AM

Red Cross Warming Center at the Portland Foursquare Church
1302 Ankeny St. (near 13th in Inner SE), Portland
Available during Severe Weather only!
9:00 PM - 7:00 AM
Serves: Families, couples, single adults, and youth; Pets allowed; some space for carts; disability accessible location (main floor).

Red Cross Warming Center at Central City Concern's Estate Hotel
225 NW Couch
Available during Severe Weather only!
9:00 PM - 7:00 AM
Serves: Families, couples, single adults, and youth. Pets allowed; some space for carts; disability accessible location (elevator).

YOUTH UNDER 21:

PORCHLIGHT CRISIS SHELTER
Porchlight Crisis Shelter is the city's only emergency youth shelter for young people under 21 years of age. During severe weather, Porchlight has the capacity to provide a few additional beds on a first-come-first-served basis (6 extra beds for a total of 36 guests). Youth with BLA’s from shelter should be encouraged to speak to shelter supervisor (Ken Kerr) during hazardous weather conditions. There may be instances in which non-violent BLA’s can be waived for safety on a case-by-case basis. Please note that Porchlight staff will not waive BLA’s, youth must speak with Ken Kerr directly. Porchlight staff prioritizes safety and will only accommodate additional youth when doing so does not create an unsafe environment. Porchlight does not have the ability to accommodate pets.

WOMEN ONLY

Salvation Army Female Emergency Shelter (S.A.F.E.)
1136 SW 11th
(503) 227-8681
Space for 12 additional single women via mats on the floor in the day space during severe weather. Day space open 7am to 11pm daily. Shelter open 7:45pm to 7:00 am daily. No pets or carts. Not disability accessible due to steep stairs.

DAY SERVICES:

Expanded severe weather Day Shelter may also be available at Portland Rescue Mission or Salvation Army, depending on weather severity and as staffing permits. Contact sites directly to inquire about Day Time Access. St. Francis, Julia West/Daywatch, and S.A.F.E. Shelter all operate Day Service for adults year round. New Avenues for Youth & Outside In offer Day Services for youth under 21 year round.

TRANSPORTATION:

Yellow Brick Road and Can We Help often provide Severe Weather Transportation in an effort to get as many people indoors as possible. Transportation is generally available during severe weather from 6pm-10pm but always call 211 first to confirm availability!

For more information please contact 211 Info:
(503) 721-1500 or dial 2-1-1 from landlines
Monday through Friday 8am-10pm
& Saturday and Sunday 10am-10pm.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

DICENTRA

Dicentra is a Portland-based radical collective actively engaged in creating communities of care, networks of support, and movements of positive change based on relationship building. This week Dicentra hosts Harm Reduction and Intervention, a workshop and panel discussion that brings together practitioners and organizers to explore the dynamic practical and conceptual landscape of harm reduction. Speakers from Rose City Copwatch, Cahoots/White Bird Clinic, Yellow Brick Road/Janus Youth Programs, Dicentra Collective, and others will examine the role of harm reduction in addressing domestic and interpersonal violence, police brutality, substance abuse and mental illness, dispute resolution and street facilitation. Please join Yellow Brick Road this Thursday for what will undoubtedly be a thought provoking evening.

Thursday December 11 @ 6pm
In Other Words Women’s Books and Resources
8 NE Killingsworth Street
Portland, Oregon


For more information visit the online Dicentra Collective here.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Food Front Supports Yellow Brick Road!

Yellow Brick Road has once again been selected for participation in Food Front's generous Bean Bag program! Food Front is one of Portland's longest-running cooperatively owned grocery stores and their Bean Bag program allows customers to donate 5 cents to various local non-profit organizations every time they shop with their own bags. Next time you shop at Food Front, we hope you'll bring your own recycled shopping bag and consider donating 5 cents to Yellow Brick Road. Those nickels really add up and make a difference!
Food Front Cooperative Grocery
2375 NW Thurman Street
Portland, Oregon
(503) 222-5658

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Organize Against Transphobia

Silve​rton,​​​ Oregon recently elect​ed the first​ ever openl​y trans​gende​r Mayor​,​​​ Stu Rasmu​ssen!​​​ Unsurprisingly the Westb​oro Bapti​st Churc​h, founded by extre​me homop​hobic​ preac​her Fred Phelp​s of www.godha​tesfa​gs.​​​com infamy, is comin​g to Orego​n this week to prote​st the election. Queer​s and allie​s throughout Orego​n are preparing to organize in support of Stu Rasmussen in an effort to counter the hate directed at the GLBTQ community.​​ Portl​and is obser​ving Trans​gende​r Remem​branc​e Day this week so it seems an especially critical time to rally​ in suppo​rt of the first​ openl​y elect​ed trans​gende​red offic​ial. Westb​oro Bapti​st Churc​h has announced plans to prote​st​ throu​ghout Portl​and this week and they plan to visit Silve​rton on Monda​y,​​​ Nov. 24th.​​​ In response, a meeti​ng has been announced to brainstorm ways to suppo​rt the queer​ commu​nity and raise​ awareness of the hate directed at our citizens. If you are inter​ested​ in being​ invol​ved pleas​e consider atten​ding a plann​ing meeti​ng on Frida​y,​​​ Nov. 21st at 7pm at Outsi​de In. If you have ideas​ or quest​ions or want to support but can't attend the meeting feel free to email​ the organizers at: dmm19​76@​​​gmail​.​​​com or climb​erfag​@​​​gmail​.​​​com.

​Frida​y​​​ November 21
7pm
Outsi​de In
​​1132 SW 13th Ave.
Portl​and,​​​ OR 97205​
(betwe​en Jeffe​rson and Main on 13th.)

​​

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Cat Food Bank December 7th

Cat Food Bank
Sunday December 7

The Cat Adoption Team's Cat Food Bank will be open on Sunday December 7 to provide cat/kitten food to homeless cat owners and cat owners with financial need. Some kitty litter may be available as supplies last. Remember, this is NOT A PET CLINIC. They will only have cat food. Just come to the address below between noon and 2:30pm on Sunday December 7th! CAT’s Cat Food Bank has provided 3,039.15 pounds of kitten and cat food to local cat owners to feed 316 cats/kittens since its inception in June (approximately 53 cats/kittens each month). CAT is also seeking donations of unopened, unexpired cat or kitten food as well as clumping cat litter to keep the Cat Food Bank shelves full.

14175 SW Galbreath Drive ~ Sherwood OR 97140 ~ (503) 925-8903
www.catadoptionteam.org

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Long Nights: A Glimpse into Portland Street Life

Check out this great video put together by
Portland Youth Builders!




Long Nights: A Glimpse into Portland Street Life is a student-produced documentary featuring conversations with members of Portland's homeless community and local service providers in order to better understand the issues of youth homelessness. Students focus on de-bunking homeless myths and stereotypes and provide an introduction to the controversial Sit/Lie Ordinance and the Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness. Participants include Dennis Lundberg of Janus Youth Programs, Gloria Willis of Cascade AIDS Project, Natalie Schraner of the Portland Women's Crisis Line, and Portland City Commissioner Randy Leonard. Check out the other videos by PYB YOUTHMEDIA HERE!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Zane Gross Memorial this Thursday

Please join us for a candlelight memorial in remeberence of Zane Gross this Thursday November 13th at 6pm in Pioneer Square. The memorial will be facilitated by Zane's mother Amber and she encourages anyone who knew him to attend.

Memorial for Zane Gross
Thursday November 13
Pioneer Square
6pm

Friday, November 07, 2008

Zane Gross

It is with deep sadness that we announce the death of Zane David James Gross. Zane was found dead this morning with immediate circumstances suggesting a possible heroin overdose. Results from a toxicology study will take approximately 6 weeks to confirm the actual cause of death. Zane was originally from Southern Oregon and came to Portland almost 2 years ago. He was screened for services and has engaged with various Homeless Youth Continuum services since his arrival. Recently Zane successfully completed drug treatment and was hoping to make significant changes in his life. His death is extremely painful for all of us who had the pleasure of experiencing his gregarious and gentle nature and is somehow even more stinging as it arrives on the heels of the recent Vulnerability Index survey. Zane's death is another cruel reminder of just how fragile the lives of young people living on the streets really are. Memorial services will be announced soon. Rest in peace, Zane.
Zane Gross
March 25, 1990-November 7, 2008

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Vulnerability Index

Janus Youth Programs recently collaborated with Portland’s Bureau of Housing and Community Development, New York City's Common Ground Institute, local service providers, and nearly 70 volunteers to conduct a Vulnerability Index survey in our community. The Vulnerability Index is a tool for identifying and prioritizing a community's most medically fragile homeless population. It is a practical application of research into the causes of death of homeless individuals initially conducted by Boston’s Healthcare for the Homeless organization, led by Dr. Jim O’Connell. The Boston research identified specific health conditions that cause homeless individuals to be most at risk for dying on the street. The Vulnerability Index is administered in the form of a survey, which captures a homeless individual’s health and institutional history. The survey identifies vulnerability through a ranking system which takes into account risk factors and the duration of homelessness. This ranking allows those with the most severe health risks to be identified and prioritized for housing and other support. By surveying people who are living on our streets here in Portland, we now have clear health and housing data on the individuals living on the streets and in some of our community’s shelters. This data will hopefully allow Portland to take immediate action on behalf of the most vulnerable people who are living on our streets, as well as identifying and implementing system improvements. 13 teams strategically canvassed Portland between the hours of 6am and 8am over the course of 3 mornings beginning on Tuesday October 21. The initial findings were decidedly disturbing. 646 people were surveyed and 47% of those fit the definition of "medically vulnerable". In comparison with other communities that conducted the Vulnerability Index survey, Portland stands out in several areas:

• Portland’s overall “medically vulnerable” population was 5% higher than other cities that conducted the same survey (notably New York City, Los Angeles County's Skid Row, Santa Monica, New Orleans and Washington D.C.).

• Portland surveyed more young adults sleeping on the streets than other cities (15 people surveyed were under the age of 19 and 89 people surveyed were under the age of 30). 23 people under the age of 25 fit the survey's definition of "medically vulnerable" (specifically related to co-existing HIV, injection drug use and or daily alcohol consumption), a much higher number of young adults that fit the risk criteria than the larger cities that conducted the survey.

• Portland had a 12% higher rate of tri-morbidity than other cities that conducted the same survey. Tri-morbidity is defined as a co-occurring psychiatric, substance abuse, and chronic medical condition.

• Shockingly, Portland had a 10% higher rate of violent attacks on homeless than other cities that conducted the same survey (keep in mind again that those other cities include New York City, Los Angeles County's Skid Row, Santa Monica, New Orleans and Washington D.C.)

• 29% of the homeless people surveyed said they had foster care involvement at some point during their lives, 3 times higher than the national average (the average for the other cities that conducted the Vulnerability Index was about 10%).

• Despite our relatively mild winters Portland has a significantly higher rate of exposure-related health risks such as frostbite, hypothermia, and immersion foot(trench foot). Exposure-related health risks are considered indicators of self-neglect and Portland's rates are alarmingly close to New York City.

• Portland has a much higher percentage of people whose only income is food stamps and a higher rate of folks without healthcare (63% of the people surveyed had no insurance).

• Those surveyed reported a total of 730 emergency room visits within the past 3 months at an estimated cost of $492 per visit for an estimated cost of $1.43 million per year in emergency medical care.

Sick City

Janus Youth Street Outreach Supervisor Dennis Lundberg spoke to Street Roots journalist Amanda Waldroupe this past week regarding Portland's recent Vulnerability Index survey. Here's what he had to say about the experience:

Street Roots: You were initially skeptical about the survey. Why?

Dennis Lundberg: Yeah, I was skeptical going into the survey. One of my initial problems with the survey was that outreach workers in our community were not consulted until after the City of Portland had signed a contract with Common Ground from New York. The result was that many of us felt railroaded by the request to participate in a survey that we knew little about and which seemed to fly in the face of basic outreach etiquette. A few of us insisted on a conference call with the Common Ground organizers to address our concerns about methodology and intent before we made the commitment. I was skeptical about waking people at 4am, as they did in other cities conducting the survey, and we successfully pushed the wake-up time to 6am. I was also very uncomfortable with the idea of photographing people. In general, I was skeptical that the survey might turn into a demoralizing media circus. There can be something of a voyeuristic element to doing this sort of thing and I certainly wasn't willing to undermine my credibility as an outreach worker by taking strangers into the "homes" of people sleeping on the streets.

By Thursday morning, what had changed for you?

By Thursday I was exhausted! Many of us had to continue our regular work days despite the survey so by Thursday I was really feeling worn out. I appreciated Liora Berry's insightful observation at City Hall Thursday morning that we were all feeling the effects of sleep deprivation after just a few days so imagine how folks must feel after weeks, months, and years of homelessness. I think some people had their eyes opened out there and I applaud all the volunteers and workers who participated. As for myself, I actually had fun with the survey! It just felt like another opportunity to engage and, despite the gravity of the questions, I shared some good laughs with the people I met. I can only speak to my experience but it felt comfortable and it felt compassionate. I was really struck by people's willingness to open up and share very personal information with strangers waking them up before dawn. I was also surprised by the ease with which many people allowed their photo to be taken. It would've been just as easy to refuse. One of the questions asked for an emergency contact and most people seemed genuinely touched that we would be concerned about their well-being. That's not something I ask often and it actually benefited the interactions. Most importantly I learned some things about people's health and time on the streets that should serve to further illuminate the work that needs to be done in our community. Once I got out there I realized this could be another opportunity for people to stand and be counted.

As an outreach worker, do you typically ask the sorts of questions the survey asked? Why or why not?

I never delve into people's medical history the way the Vulnerability Index did, but I think context is everything. I don't really mince words on outreach and I'll ask some pretty uncomfortable questions in the service of knowledge-sharing and understanding. For instance, when young people ask me for condoms on outreach I typically quiz them on sexually transmitted infections and I may even give them a quick harm reductionist lesson on the risks of being sexually active. I may ask them if they're involved in sex work. I often ask total strangers if they have a safe place to stay for the night and I don't mind telling people that their spider bites look like abscess infections. Those aren't easy conversations but sometimes we can do a disservice if we avoid the difficult questions.

Did you feel that the questions were an invasion of privacy? If you did, what was it like for you, as someone whose job requires being respectful and considerate to the people you work with, to ask them?

I think walking into someone's camp uninvited at 6am and waking them up is generally an invasion of privacy. As an outreach worker I think it is wise to understand this dynamic beforehand and conduct one's self accordingly. I was very conscious of how invasive the questions might be and I weighed the survey carefully before agreeing to participate. I took a leap of faith with Common Ground and the BHCD [Bureau of Housing and Community Development] that we would hopefully glean some data that might make it all worthwhile. Respect is the basic foundation of Janus Youth Street Outreach and we convey a lot with mindful body posture, voice inflection, eye contact, and facial expression. If people don't want us around, we leave. It's as simple as that. In the final analysis, if the survey serves to create resources for housing, as we've been told it has in other cities, then it might just prove to be worth the discomfort.

Did you give the survey to folks you had previously engaged with? What was that like for you? How did your relationship with the individuals change, if at all?

Both. I asked many of the young people I work with weekly to sit and do the survey with me but I also spoke to several older folks I've never met before. My team was comprised of Janus Outreach Specialists, Neal Sand and DeAnna Negrete, and we purposefully set out to some camps "off the grid" of downtown in an effort to find vulnerable people who might have been otherwise overlooked. We met some people in St. Johns that rarely leave their wooded camp who were incredibly high risk. I'm talking about IV drug users with Hep C and cancer! As I mentioned earlier, context is everything and we did our best to re-frame the survey as simply another tool for engaging with people. With the folks I've known for a while it was a great opportunity to delve deeper into questions of drug/alcohol use and mental health. I think I've been around long enough that most people trust that I wouldn't ask this stuff unless I thought it could do some good.


What did you learn from doing the survey? Were there any surprises for you?


It's funny because when we had our conference call with Common Ground I kept insisting that Portland's homeless population is quite unique and should be approached with regional sensitivity. They responded by essentially telling us that everywhere they've conducted the survey people think their city is unique but the findings are often very similar. I opened my mind to the possibility that I would learn a lot about our streets at this early hour and hoped to be proven wrong about Portland's arguably most vulnerable citizens. When the survey was over and the initial findings were shared at the Portland Building I think it was probably Common Ground who were most surprised and unfortunately it was rather grim news. No other city surveyed had as many cases of DHS/foster care involvement. No other city surveyed had as many people under 30 fall under the definition of medically vulnerable. Despite Portland's laid-back reputation, our rates for violent attacks on the homeless were higher than New York and Los Angeles! Frankly, that even surprised me.

What do you think the results of the survey convey? What should the City and housing bureau do in response to the results? What do you think of what seems to be the reaction they will move forward with--rapidly housing the most vulnerable and giving them priority in housing?

The findings support what many of us have known for a long time. Mental health is a staggering and complicated issue and we do not have sufficient resources here in Portland to meet the need. If we try to house people without addressing the root causes of their marginalization, such as mental health and substance abuse issues, we are setting them up to fail. Closely related to mental health is medical well-being and, with painfully few exceptions, most of the people I spoke with have no health insurance. Almost everyone said they seek medical attention at emergency rooms. This points to a major system failure and I'd go so far as to say that lack of affordable health care is the most immediate threat to our national security. Hepatitis C seems to be nearly epidemic on the streets of Portland so it's time to stop kidding ourselves and start rallying behind harm reduction and needle exchange programs. We really need to invest in our young people at a very early age. The huge rate of foster care involvement among the homeless indicates that we need to work together as a community to support healthy families from the start or we are simply creating the next generation of homeless citizens. Incidentally, the war overseas is daily creating our next generation of homeless citizens and the longer the war continues the more we should brace ourselves for the fallout here on the streets.

For more information about Portland's Vulnerability Index check out the latest issue of Street Roots.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

YOUTH POEM

It's amounting to
about the the same level
of two extremes.
Crazy and listless
confused and out of touch
What the hell DID I
do last night?

I guess when you've gotten
so good at using other
things to deal with
your problems, you have to learn
to be normal again.

Drink when yout socially
anxious a little lubrication
won't hurt. Besides poeple
will always remember your
name when you wake up
in the bathroom the
morning after the party

Pot helps to relaz when
your feeling overwhelmed
just a toke or two will
keep you content with
just eating and lounging
around. I mean, who
really want to concentrate
efforts on productive
work and thinds that
will move you father
ahead.

And lest we forget,
a little meth will get
you out of that slump
from all of the non
productivity. You can
stay awake for DAYS!
and not have to
stop to eat

Now I have to breathe
deep and take life a
day at a time, moment
by moment. Relearning
how I actually work

Feeling arising that
I haven't felt in years
or even forgot that I
was capable of.

Mel"vaton"

Friday, October 17, 2008

UPCOMING YBR TRAINING

Yellow Brick Road invites you to attend our FREE upcoming volunteer training on Sunday November 16th! Our trainings are a great opportunity to learn more about street outreach and meet the current volunteer outreach teams. This training will focus on GLBTQ youth and the Sexual Minority Youth Resource Center (SMYRC) will present their excellent Bridge 13 Training! This promises to be a thought-provoking afternoon! We'll get started at 2pm with food & coffee.

SUNDAY November 16th
2-5pm

Please R.S.V.P. for location: dlundberg@janusyouth.org

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Remembering Noe

We regret to announce the death of Noe Balderrama who passed away unexpectedly last month. Noe faced life’s challenges with a beaming (slightly mischievous) smile and touched the lives of those around him with his far-beyond-positive attitude. He also touched the lives of those around him as his Championship Wrestler alter-ego "Master of Disaster"! Noe was a Special Olympics athlete who was known to visit our programs wearing a sequined Mexican wrestling mask! He taught many of us a thing or two about cherishing life and not taking a single moment for granted. His death has hit the community hard and impacted many of us who worked closely with him over the years as he transitioned from homelessness to independence. Please join us Monday October 13th at 4:00pm @ Outside In where we will place his name on the Memorial Tree. We miss you, Mr. Master of Disaster!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

NOW HIRING YOUTH!

The Metamorphosis Project is currently accepting applications for the Recovery Transition Advocate (RTA) position. This ia a part-time entry-level position. No experience is necessary! Our mission is to engage and encourage youth to exit street life with innovative outreach and customized youth-friendly services integrating alcohol/drug and mental health treatment. As an RTA you will be expected to act as a clean & sober peer role-model for 16-24 year old homeless and street dependent youth, providing support, referrals, and crisis intervention through the Homeless Youth Continuum. We encourage diversity!

Job Responsibilities:

Provide support, information, referral and crisis intervention to homeless and street dependent youth.

Focus on the engagement and support of youth involved in drug and alcohol recovery.

Qualifications:

1 year clean and sober time (required)

High school diploma or GED

Experience and/or knowledge of the issues of homelessness and drug and alcohol addiction.

A pre-employment drug screening (required)


Position closes October 22, 2008.

Please call (503) 789-4011 for more information.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Happy Birthday!

This week marks the 4-year anniversary of Janus Youth's innovative streetwork initiative Portland Outreach & Engagement! The program, popularly known as "O&E" on the streets, was launched on this day 4 years ago in an effort to reach the most street-entrenched youth & young adults in Portland and those young people who we felt were "slipping through the cracks" in services. O&E was conceived as an intensive relationship-based mobile street service team that essentially brings case-management support, safety planning, and assessment directly to the people who need these services most…but are least likely to come seek out those services themselves. For 4 years Portland Outreach & Engagement has been leading the way toward creatively “meeting young people where they are at” on the streets, in the woods, and under bridges here in our community. To learn more about this incredible program, please visit us at our Myspace account here. Happy Birthday, O&E!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

"Love, The Youth..."

The following poem was taped to the Yellow Brick Road office door this morning...

Yellow Brick Road

You recognize them by the bags they wear
Their smiles let you know they care
Often you'll see the RTA's
Unselfishly leading the way
They lead their life with the rule
That drugs just aren't cool
And the kind hearted volunteers dedicating
Thier time
Though they don't get paid a dime
They get rewarded by heartfelt thank you's
For all the wonderful things they do
When one of them you happen to meet
As they walk down the street
In appreciation just say hi's
To some awesome guys
Even when it showers
They continue to walk long hours
For us
~Mouse

P.S.
This poem is a token of thanks for you volunteering your time to ensure we stay safe. What would we do without the volunteers, RTA's, Dennis, Neal, and everyone else? Keep on doin' what you're doin'.
Love,
the youth

Monday, August 18, 2008

PROJECT HOMELESS CONNECT


Project Homeless Connect takes place this Friday August 22nd from 10am until 4pm at the Waterfront Park in downtown Portland! Project Homeless Connect is a collaboration of agencies, social services, and the Portland community at large coming together to help solve issues of homelessness and poverty. Please spread the word about this amazing event and if you wish to get involved as a volunteer you can find more information here.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Yellow Brick Road Awarded!

Yellow Brick Road was a recipient of the first annual Coordinating Committee to End Homelessness Achievment Award for our outstanding efforts in reaching out to homeless youth and others experiencing homelessness in the Portland community. The award was accepted by Program Supervisor Dennis Lundberg on behalf of ALL the volunteers, outreach specialists, and peer advocates who make Yellow Brick Road one of the most highly respected outreach programs in the nation.


Here's a great shot of all the recipients receiving their awards with Mayor Tom Potter. Photo courtesy Dove Hotz.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

HEALTH FAIR THIS SATURDAY (June 14)!

There will be a Health Fair open to all in the Portland area THIS SATURDAY JUNE 14th! Our advice is GET THERE EARLY...

Woodmere Elementary School
7900 SE Duke St. Portland, OR 97206.

9am – 4pm


Basic Medical exams
Basic Dental Cleanings and Emergency Treatment
Free Chiropractic Exams
Basic Eye Exams
Social Services
Free Lunch, and more!

Go to www. compassionse. org for more info. Please spread the word to anyone who may benefit from these services.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

ANIMAL HEATH CLINIC

Animal Health Clinic is available THIS SUNDAY for animals living with people experiencing or transitioning from homelessness! Services are available on a first-come-first-served basis so arrive early if possible.
Sunday June 8
1pm-4pm
Outside In Arts Building
1030 SW 13th Ave.
(503) 535-3844

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

KNOW YOUR RIGHTS TRAINING!

Janus Youth Programs and the Northwest Constitutional Rights Center are proud to present 'Know Your Rights', a free training for people under 25 years of age and experiencing homelessness in Portland. The training will take place on Wednesday May 28th at Portland: Outreach & Engagement (O&E) so while you're there for the training you can also grab a meal, take a shower, do laundry, and access our phones & computers. Please remember that this training is only available to people under 25. We hope to see you there!


Wednesday May 28th
12:30pm
1635 SW Alder Street
Portland, Oregon

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Regarding The Homeless Protest At City Hall...

Mayor Tom Potter has issued a statement regarding the homeless protest outside City Hall. Starting today, Saturday May 10th, Portland Police have been instructed to enforce standard Protest Guidelines. This essentially means the homeless campers will need to abide by the same standards the City of Portland expects of all citizenry protests. As of today the campers will no longer be allowed to have sleeping bags or other belongings on the sidewalk. They can carry signs but cannot have signs, tarps, or banners leaning on or fixed to property. They need to remain in motion so can no longer sit or lie on the sidewalk. They also need to remain within a certain distance from the protest site to be considered part of the protest. Mayor Tom Potter has also decided to close the City Hall bathroom after regular business hours while the protest continues. Mayor Potter identified unsanitary use of the facility as his reason for the bathroom closure. Enforcement of Protest Guidelines at City Hall presumably implies that police will maintain a presence in the area and monitor the protest more closely. Police are also expected to post signs at City Hall this weekend stating that on Tuesday May 13th they will begin sweeping the area. The City has cited growing numbers of homeless protesters and increasing complaints of drug use in the area as the primary reason they will be taking action swifter than initially expected. Yellow Brick Road outreach workers will spread this information on the streets starting this evening in an effort to minimize rumors and misinformation.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

TRAINING THIS SUNDAY!

Yellow Brick Road invites you to attend OUR FREE volunteer training this Sunday May 4th! Our trainings are a great opportunity to learn more about street outreach and meet the current volunteer outreach teams. This training will focus on street mental health and we will have a guest speaker from Kaiser share with us some common symptoms of mental health we are likely to see on the streets and how we might engage with people experiencing mental health issues more effectively. We'll also discuss some basic coping skills to share with young people dealing with mental health on the streets. We'll even consider our own mental health and take a look at the unique self-care challenges faced by those of us who advocate for people experiencing crisis and trauma. This promises to be a thought-provoking afternoon! We'll get started at 2pm with food & coffee.

SUNDAY MAY 4th
2-5pm

Please R.S.V.P. for location: dlundberg@janusyouth.org

Thursday, April 24, 2008

FOOD FRONT SUPPORTS YELLOW BRICK ROAD!

Yellow Brick Road has once again been selected for participation in Food Front's generous Bean Bag program! Food Front is one of Portland's longest-running cooperatively owned grocery stores and their Bean Bag program allows customers to donate 5 cents to various local non-profit organizations every time they shop with their own bags. Next time you shop at Food Front, we hope you'll bring your own recycled shopping bag and consider donating 5 cents to Yellow Brick Road. Those nickels really add up and make a difference!
Food Front Cooperative Grocery
2375 NW Thurman Street
Portland, Oregon
(503) 222-5658

Monday, April 21, 2008

SEVERE WEATHER CALLED FOR MONDAY APRIL 21!

Severe Weather has been called again in Multnomah County for Monday April 21st. This means no one seeking shelter will be turned away tonight. TB cards will be waived due to expected freezing conditions. Agencies may also have some ability to provide hotel vouchers to families with children needing shelter or for medically frail adults who cannot otherwise access the emergency shelters below. For more information contact the WINTER SHELTER HOTLINE from 5-8pm at (503) 721-1500.

Youth/Young Adults to Age 21:

Janus Youth Programs operates both crisis and short-term shelter year-round. There is often room in their crisis shelter so please refer male, female and transgender youth who are under 21 to this service. Please contact Street Light Shelter at (503) 432-3986 or (503) 222-5933 (after 11pm). Janus Youth Shelters are located at located at 1635 SW Alder, Portland. Youth and Young Adults, age 18 and older, are also welcome at the Adult Shelters, including the Severe Weather Shelter Sites for Adults.

Women Only:

Salvation Army Female Emergency Shelter (SAFES)
Ankeny Entry at Harbor Light Site (2nd and Burnside) (503) 731-3942. Space for 12 additional single women via mats on the floor in the day space during severe weather. Day space open 7am to 11pm daily. Shelter open 7:45pm to 7:00 am daily. No pets or carts. Not disability accessible due to steep stairs.

Men Only:

City Team Ministries
526 SE Grand Avenue (503) 231-9334. Space for 10 additional single men via mats on the floor in the main room during severe weather. May also be open during the days during severe weather. Typically there is a $ 4 per night charge, which includes sleeping space and a meal. No pets, and limited space for belongings. Accessible location

Portland Rescue Mission
111 W. Burnside (503) 227-0859. Space for 70 additional single men via mats on the floor in the lobby, may also be open during the days during severe weather. No pets, and limited space for belongings. Accessible location.

Friday, April 18, 2008

SEVERE WEATHER CALLED FOR APRIL 18th-20th!

Severe Weather has been called in Multnomah County for the following nights: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday April 18-20th. This means no one seeking shelter will be turned away this weekend. TB cards will be waived due to expected freezing conditions. Agencies may also have some ability to provide hotel vouchers to families with children needing shelter or for medically frail adults who cannot otherwise access the emergency shelters below:

Youth/Young Adults to Age 21:

Janus Youth Programs operates both crisis and short-term shelter year-round. There is often room in their crisis shelter so please refer male, female and transgender youth who are under 21 to this service. Please contact Street Light Shelter at (503) 432-3986 or (503) 222-5933 (after 11pm). Janus Youth Shelters are located at located at 1635 SW Alder, Portland. Youth and Young Adults, age 18 and older, are also welcome at the Adult Shelters, including the Severe Weather Shelter Sites for Adults.

Women Only:

Salvation Army Female Emergency Shelter (SAFES)
Ankeny Entry at Harbor Light Site (2nd and Burnside) (503) 731-3942. Space for 12 additional single women via mats on the floor in the day space during severe weather. Day space open 7am to 11pm daily. Shelter open 7:45pm to 7:00 am daily. No pets or carts. Not disability accessible due to steep stairs.

Men Only:

City Team Ministries
526 SE Grand Avenue (503) 231-9334. Space for 10 additional single men via mats on the floor in the main room during severe weather. May also be open during the days during severe weather. Typically there is a $ 4 per night charge, which includes sleeping space and a meal. No pets, and limited space for belongings. Accessible location

Portland Rescue Mission
111 W. Burnside (503) 227-0859. Space for 70 additional single men via mats on the floor in the lobby, may also be open during the days during severe weather. No pets, and limited space for belongings. Accessible location.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Outreach Log

One of our amazing volunteers celebrates her 13th year as a Yellow Brick Road outreach worker this week! This makes her our longest-running & most consistent volunteer in the history of the program. Although she wishes to remain anonymous, we wish to thank "J" very much for her dedication to Yellow Brick Road and her incredible energy on the streets of Portland. Thanks for everything you do! It's an honor to have you with us. And in an effort to further celebrate her work with Yellow Brick Road, we are publishing a recent log entry from her team's shift. The following excerpts represent one 3-hour outreach shift on-foot in downtown Portland:

Busy out there tonight! 145 guys and 56 gals, which is a record for me I think. Sheesh. Everywhere we went was really busy, especially under the Steel Bridge and Burnside Bridge...Huge crowds of people and an unusual number of Hispanic men that didn't speak English. Oh, I wish I spoke Spanish on nights like tonight! We were able to refer one man to Outside In medical clinic for chest pains. He was near tears from the pain but refused medical treatment and said he had already been to the hospital. He assured us that he would go to Outside In tomorrow and we gave him a Rose City Resource Guide for other services...We met a man named "Johnny" under the Burnside Bridge who accepted lots of first aid supplies. He said he likes to stock up and distribute supplies to people he meets on the streets. He explained that this prevents him from "having to patch people up with duct tape", like the stab wound he apparently tended to earlier in the evening! Also, his dog "K9" was one of the cutest animals I've ever met! Our hygiene kits were very popular on the streets tonight! People are very appreciative of them...We met a boy who was vague and non-commital about the source of bleeding on his face. If we had to guess I'd say it was a steel-toe boot injury or something similar! We ran out of all first-aid supplies tonight. Everyone needed stuff...our bags were really close to empty by 8pm! At PGE Park we encountered lots of younger folks...things seem to be getting more out-of-hand at the Fireman's Memorial...more alcohol use, more drama, and more shouting than usual. We reminded people to be respectful while they are hanging out at the Memorial. We'll give a heads up to shelter staff as well...There was also a high volume of women on the streets tonight. We gave lots of referrals to S.A.F.E. (Salvation Army Female Emergency Shelter). Overall, an incredibly busy and productive night our there!
~J & J (Monday Night Yellow Brick Road Team)

* Thanks again "J"!
Here's to many more years with Yellow Brick Road...

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Child Abuse still rampant in the U.S.


Researchers have recently made public their findings in a nation-wide study that 1 in 50 U.S. infants under one year of age are victims of non-fatal child abuse or neglect. 1 in 50 is a sobering number. The researchers counted more than 91,000 infant victims of abuse and neglect in the period October 1, 2005 to September 30, 2006. The information came from a national database of cases verified by protective services agencies in 45 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. "Things like abandonment and newborn drug addiction would qualify as neglect, not things like parents learning how to be parents," said study co-author Rebecca Leeb, of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

And just on the heels of this study comes the almost indescribable account of a 26 year old man beating a 2 year old girl to death with a video game remote control in York, Pennsylvania this week. Apparently the child's 19 year old mother overheard her boyfriend beating the child from the next room but did not intervene until after the boyfriend had attempted to revive the unconscious girl in a bathtub. The 2 year old was pronounced dead the following day at Hershey Medical Center, police Lt. Ron Camacho said. Youth advocates take heed and take courage! We've still got a lot to do to make this world a safer place for children.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

VOLUNTEER TRAINING MAY 4th!

Yellow Brick Road invites you to attend our upcoming FREE volunteer training on Sunday May 4th! Our trainings are a great opportunity to learn more about street outreach and meet the current volunteer outreach teams. This training will focus on street mental health and we will have a guest speaker from Kaiser share with us some common symptoms of mental health we are likely to see on the streets and how we might engage with people experiencing mental health issues more effectively. We'll also discuss some basic coping skills to share with young people dealing with mental health on the streets. We'll even consider our own mental health and take a look at the unique self-care challenges faced by those of us who advocate for people experiencing crisis and trauma. This promises to be a thought-provoking afternoon! We'll get started at 2pm with food & coffee.

SUNDAY MAY 4th
2-5pm

Please R.S.V.P. for location: dlundberg@janusyouth.org

Monday, March 17, 2008

NOW HIRING!

Project Metamorphosis is currently looking for Recovery Mentors and Recovery Transition Advocates to fill entry level, part-time positions within an innovative grant program. Position involves ability to act as a peer among 16-24 year old street youth, providing support, information, referral and crisis intervention to homeless and street dependent youth. Candidates will have experience with addiction issues and homelessness. Qualifications include: experience and/or knowledge of the issues of homelessness and drug and alcohol addiction, GED/high school diploma preferred, at least 1 year in recovery required as well as a pre-employment drug screening.

Position closes April 7, 2008.

Please call (503) 535-1170 for more information.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Outreach Log

People often ask what an evening of Yellow Brick Road Street Outreach actually looks like. The truth is, the streets can vary greatly from night to night but we do our best to be prepared for just about anything we might find out there. In an effort to share with people what we mean by "anything", we'll be posting random Yellow Brick Road log entries. Let's get started with an entry from a particularly eventful night this past weekend. The following excerpts represent one 3-hour outreach shift on-foot in downtown Portland:

Tonight we kept a relaxed pace and enjoyed the beautiful weather but still made lots of connections and managed to accomplish some solid outreach. First we headed over to Pioneer Square where a kid with face-paint and a black trench coat was reciting excerpts from the Satanic Bible (!). It didn't seem like he had actually read the book very thoroughly, but his audience seemed attentive & generally pleased to be hearing such a different sort of discourse. There was some lively debate and dialogue, after all this is Portland's living room, so we sat on the steps with some young people who shared their thoughts about the controversial religious debate taking place. By the Max rail we met a 19 year old male who we'd never seen before who said he was preferring to sleep outdoors at the moment. We gave him information about the Janus Youth Shelters and showed him where he could go if he wanted services then moved on...

We headed north from Pioneer Square and found "Amy" (19) and "Sky" (22) in front of Rite Aid, where we shared a candid conversation about their escalating intravenous drug use. We also talked about safe travelling, Amy's obviously above-average intelligence, and how she might be an excellent writer or college professor someday if she can just get it together. They said they plan to ride freight trains together to New York City next week so we cautioned them about east coast heroin (commonly referred to as "china white") which is notoriously (and dangerously) stronger than most west coast heroin (commonly referred to as "black tar"). We informed them that people often overdose on "china white" when they arrive in New York and inject their usual dose of "black tar". We cautioned them that if they continue their drug use they should always use with a friend present and do a small amount to test the purity before injecting their regular dose (this is called a "tester shot"). Harm Reduction saves lives!

Under the Burnside Bridge we met three young folks who are fairly new to town and we sent them to Road Warrior [the Homeless Youth Continuum's late night drop-in). It seemed as though they had already attempted to access but could not verify their ages so we explained how Janus might be able to help them get ID's. We then ran into "Dots" (17) by the Skidmore Fountain. She's not doing well and said she has been awake for two days on meth. She occasionally stays in Porchlight Shelter but has been using heavily. When she doesn't stay at shelter she seems to camp with much older men and is possibly trading sex for drugs (based on her current associates and some of the street drama she reported). She really needs some support right now so all teams please be looking for her and let's do our best to redirect her back to shelter and case management...

Lots of outreach occured at the meal under the Burnside Bridge and along the waterfront by the Steel Bridge. Back near Old Town we met a woman calling herself "Ocean" who said she was attempting to get away from an abusive partner who pulled a knife on her earlier in the day. She said she left their Southeast Portland apartment to avoid "getting my ass beat again" and said her boyfriend was looking for her downtown. She knew about the Portland Women's Crisis Line but said all the domestic violence shelters were already full. We told her we might be able to advocate for her with the Portland Police and get her referred into an emergency bed at a local shelter and she agreed to walk with us to the Old Town cop shop. When we arrived, the officer we spoke with was rushing to the Ross Island Bridge where two people had just reportedly jumped! All we could do was hope we don't know them. We then escorted "Ocean" to the Salvation Army Female Shelter where she was able to wait inside safely while we called police non-emergency for an escort to the emergency shelter bed. It felt good knowing that we were able to get her safely indoors even if for just one night. Especially considering how frustrating domestic violence situations can be due to a lack of space at the existing programs...

On the way back to the office we met three teenage girls on the Max who had obviously just been in some sort of altercation with another young female. we struck up casual conversation and learned that all three are currently housed or "couch surfing" but they seemed very high-risk. One of them said she had dropped-out of high school and another said it was unlikely that she would make it through another year. we gave them our contact info, explained what we do and how we might be able to help. We also talked about how important it is to stay in school and just get it done now rather than going for the G.E.D. later. She said she knew but shrugged and said, "I don't know what will happen..."

Wow. Busy night!
~D & J (Sunday Night Yellow Brick Road Team)

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Yellow Brick Road Volunteer Training

Thanks to everyone who responded to our upcoming homeless youth panel. THE TRAINING IS NOW FULL. Due to the high volume of R.S.V.P.'s we've received we're posting our next training opportunity way in advance. Please R.S.V.P. as soon as possible if you're interested in attending:

MENTAL HEALTH ON THE STREETS!
SUNDAY MAY 4TH
2PM-5PM


We will have a guest speaker from Kaiser share with us some common mental health symptoms we are likely to see on the streets and how we might engage with people experiencing mental health issues more effectively. We'll also discuss some basic coping skills to share share with young people dealing with mental health on the streets. Please R.S.V.P. to dlundberg@janusyouth.org

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

HIGHER GROUND

The National Weather Service is forecasting heavy rain in Portland this week between Wednesday and Thursday. There is also a potential for several inches of rain over the weekend. We are not expecting any serious flooding, but if you are sleeping outdoors- or know someone who is camping outdoors- please be aware and take to higher ground if necessary. We will update with Severe Weather Alerts as more information becomes available.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Feb. 3...warming stations CLOSED tonight!

Portland's Severe Weather Warming Shelters are closed tonight. Sunday is NOT a severe weather night.

Monday, January 28, 2008

THE KIDS WILL HAVE THEIR SAY!

Ever wonder what it's like to live on the streets? Want to know the truth about "street families"? Want to know how adults might more effectively engage with vulnerable young people? Yellow Brick Road has invited homeless (& formally homeless) youth and young adults from our community to participate in a very special afternoon of training. Join us as we...ASK THE EXPERTS!

WHEN: Sunday February 24th

TIME: 2pm-5pm

WHERE: Please R.S.V.P. for location at (503)789-4011 or dlundberg@janusyouth.org

photo by kif

Friday, January 25, 2008

Severe Weather Called for January 25th!

Severe Weather has been declared again for Friday January 25th. NO ONE WILL BE TURNED AWAY FROM SHELTER TONIGHT! In addition to the previously announced Severe Weather Shelters, Dignity Village has just announced that they will provide emergency space for 10 extra people on Severe Weather nights. For more information please visit 211 INFO

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Severe Weather Called for January 24th!

Severe Weather has been declared again for Thursday January 24th. This is likely to remain in effect through the weekend but we will update as soon as this is confirmed. NO ONE WILL BE TURNED AWAY FROM SHELTER TONIGHT! In addition to the previously announced Severe Weather Shelters, Dignity Village has just announced that they will provide emergency space for 10 extra people on Severe Weather nights. For more information please visit 211 INFO

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Yellow Brick Road Training This Sunday!

You are invited to attend our upcoming
YELLOW BRICK ROAD VOLUNTEER TRAINING

WHEN: SUNDAY January 27th (2-5pm)

WHERE: Please R.S.V.P. for location: dlundberg@janusyouth.org

This training is FREE and open to anyone interested in learning more about our street outreach program. This is a great opportunity to meet our current team of volunteers and learn more about Portland's longest running volunteer-based street outreach program! Applications will be available after the training.

Severe Weather Called for January 22 & 23!

The puddles are already frozen despite the unusual appearance of a mid-winter sun in Portland! Multnomah County has opened emergency warming stations for the next two nights. NO ONE WILL BE DENIED ACCESS TO SHELTERS TONIGHT. If you need any assistance getting to a warming station, please call Yellow Brick Road at (503) 789-4011 between 6pm-10pm.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Severe Weather Called For Tuesday January 15th

We experienced some unexpected ice last night and this morning and the forecast is calling for similar conditions tonight. The Estate & Calvary Christian Church have opened up emergency warming stations. NO ONE WILL BE DENIED ACCESS TO SHELTERS TONIGHT. Please see the information below regarding available shelters, locations, and eligibility. If you need any assistance getting to a warming station, please call Yellow Brick Road at (503) 789-4011 between 6pm-10pm.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Positive Youth Development

Positive Youth Development is an approach to working with young people that focuses on their development and strengths instead of their problems or deficits. Based on emerging research into human resiliency and brain development, the principles and practices of the Positive Youth Development model have become a recognized best practice for youth programs and an increasingly accepted method of re-thinking our approach with young people. At Janus Youth Programs Positive Youth Development informs nearly every aspect of our work with street-entrenched youth & young adults. In this spirit, and thanks to the generous support of the Hoover Family Foundation, we have implemented a series of youth-driven workshops and field trips over the past year in an effort to build positive adult relationships and self-esteem and to draw our young clients out of the "comfort zone" of street life and low expectations. First we created a suggestion box which became a prominent fixture at our weekly stationary outreach program Portland: Outreach & Engagement. The suggestion box was designed to inspire participants to identify topics of interest and take ownership of the planning process and workshop agendas. Once ideas were selected from the box, youth were encouraged to co-facilitate workshops according to their individual interests, skills, and enthusiasm. At every opportunity staff fostered an environment in which young people felt safe in their vulnerability of taking on leadership roles, making mistakes, and accepting new challenges. This was astoundingly clear at our recent Stencil Art Workshop! We have documented extensive "measurable outcomes" and exceeded our own expectations in terms of successful results, but the photos and beautiful artwork we captured at this workshop speak louder than the reports. Please take a look at the following photos and feel free to drop a line if you are interested in implementing similar workshops at your own agency. We'd be happy to further share with you our experiences.

The workshop was co-facilitated by Rhythm Kenaley-Lundberg, a 13 year-old 8th grade student who volunteered his time and expertise to demonstrate how stencils are created. Thanks, Rhythm!

The first part of the process consisted of brainstorming ideas and thinking about "negative space"...



"NEVER SUBMIT"

"Matt" co-facilitated the workshop along with Rhythm. "Matt" is a very artistic 21 year-old who recently moved into permanent housing through Janus Youth Programs' Clean & Sober Housing Program!

Rhythm finishes cutting out his cowboy stencil...

Outside on our building's Youth Mural Wall, Rhythm lines up his stencil and covers it with spraypaint

"Yeehaw!"


Matt's very first stencil is a resounding success!


Matt decides to attempt a multi-colored design and consults with Rhythm on the best approach...




It turned out beautifully!



"J" sets up his stencil...


The finished piece!














It was an amazing afternoon!
Look for more postings on our workshops and Positive Youth Development soon...

Severe Weather Called For Wednesday January 9th!

The forecast is once again calling for very cold and rainy weather tonight so The Estate & Calvary Christian Church have opened up emergency warming stations. NO ONE WILL BE DENIED ACCESS TO SHELTERS TONIGHT. Please see the information below regarding available shelters, locations, and eligibility.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Severe Weather Called For Tuesday January 8th

The forecast is calling for very cold and rainy weather again tonight, with a wind-chill factor that will make it feel like 25 degrees. Multnomah County has declared a Severe Weather Alert for Tuesday January 8th. NO ONE WILL BE DENIED ACCESS TO SHELTERS TONIGHT. Please see the information below regarding available shelters.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Severe Weather Called For Monday January 7th

The forecast is calling for 35 degree weather tonight with a wind-chill factor that will make it feel more like 25 to 27 degrees. We are also expecting heavy rain throughout the night, potentially up to .8" of an inch in a seven hour period, with some snow flurries. Multnomah County has declared a Severe Weather for Monday January 7th. NO ONE WILL BE DENIED ACCESS TO SHELTERS TONIGHT. Please see the information below regarding available shelters:

Youth/Young Adults Under 21:

Janus Youth Shelter (Porchlight) is the city's only emergency youth shelter for young people under 21 years of age. During severe weather, Porchlight may have the capacity to provide a few additional beds on a first-come-first-served basis (6 extra beds for a total of 36 guests). Note that Porchlight staff will always prioritize safety when determining if the shelter can accommodate additional youth. Porchlight does not have the abililty to accomodate pets or dependents. Located at 1635 SW Alder St., shelter opens at 8:45pm. Youth and Young Adults, age 18 and older, are also welcome at the Adult Shelters, including the Severe Weather Shelter Sites for Adults listed below.

Women Only:

Salvation Army Female Emergency Shelter (S.A.F.E.S.)Ankeny Entry at Harbor Light Site (2nd and Burnside) 503-731-3942. Space for 12 additional single women via mats on the floor. No pets or carts. Not disability accessible (up steep set of stairs).

Men Only:

City Team Ministries526 SE Grand Avenue (503) 231-9334
Space for 10 additional single men via mats on the floor in the main room during severe weather. May also be open during the days during severe weather. Typically there is a $3 per night charge, which includes sleeping space and a meal. No pets, and limited space for belongings. Accessible location.

Portland Rescue Mission111 W. Burnside (503) 227-0859
Space for 10 additional single men via mats on the floor in the lobby, may also be open during the days during severe weather. No pets, and limited space for belongings. Accessible location

Men, Women, Couples:

The Estate (Shelter service operated by American Red Cross)
225 NW Couch (Old Town). Open until at capacity. Space for 40-50 adults via cots in the renovated basement – refreshments provided. Pets allowed, and some space for carts. Accessible location (elevator)

Calvary Christian Church126 NE Alberta Portland, OR 97211 (503) 422-6358
Space for 60-70 people.

Union Gospel Mission – Not sure if they will be operating-please call them directly.
15 NW 3rd (503) 228-0319 Open until at capacity

Transportation may be available to people who are unable to get to these shelters. Call (503) 789-4011 for more information.