What Is the Need for A Family Shelter in Galveston?
Post-Harvey: Galveston County cities including Dickinson, Hitchcock, Alvin, Manvel, League City, and Friendswood endured unprecedented levels of flooding. None of these areas have public housing. As of November 1st, many residents have not received adequate FEMA or insurance payments. Some are living in damaged or unsafe housing. There is no available public housing on the near Gulf Coast. Galveston lost the bulk of its public housing in Hurricane Ike. Because 70% of all housing was flooded on the island, there are very few habitable residences that can use a Section 8 voucher. FEMA help for many families is time limited.
What is The Family Crisis Center @ The Children’s Center, Inc.? The Family Crisis Center: is an emergency homeless shelter that keeps families together as a unit and trauma-informed care. The shelter also provides referral resources such as health care, substance abuse treatment, job preparation and limited mental health care as funds permit. The Family Shelter is currently operating in 5 four-bedroom apartments on Pelican Island. If funding becomes available TCCI would like to expand to 7 four-bedroom units. This location allows our wrap-around, trauma-informed care team to serve clients with a more secure location and privacy. The location has security entrances and lighting.
Harvey Response The Children’s Center, Inc. had to ability to respond to Hurricane Harvey when it affected the Galveston County Mainland, Harris County, Lower Brazoria and Aransas Counties. TCCI staff are all trained in trauma-informed care methodologies which are especially effective in a disaster situation. In immediate response to Harvey, TCCI transformed office and training space at 1121 Ave. L. into an emergency shelter with 85 beds. Ultimately the Emergency Facility sheltered 39 Harvey victims in a 30-day period. During Harvey the Director of our Child and Family Safety Network went to NRG Stadium and retrieved 50 Harvey victims. Many of those victims were then transferred to either our Brazoria County Shelter or a new shelter TCCI opened in an apartment complex on Pelican Island, Texas.
Our Brazoria County Shelter at Oyster Creek is currently at capacity with 21 children and 11 adults. We will have to shut our Brazoria Shelter despite the need on November 30th due to lack of funds.Our Pelican Island Facility now has 38 total clients with 26 of them being children under 17.
Harvey Victims Served by TCCI: Snapshots Harvey Emergency Shelter TCCI is a University of Texas Medical Branch of Texas preferred partners. As a result, rather than send high-risk mothers with babies just released from the Neo-Natal Unit home during the storm they were sent the TCCI shelter where there were VOCA staff. UTMB also released pregnant high-risk mothers who were justifiably anxious about Hurricane Harvey to the TCCI shelter rather than send them home with no support.
Family Crisis Center TCCI retrieved a married couple who were 85 years old and 83 years from point of rescue. The male, a veteran, was legally blind with heart and respiratory problems. The woman had dementia, was barely ambulatory and required a walker. Once rescued, the couple explained that they had been victims of elder abuse by family members. TCCI called Texas Adult Protective Services. Although FEMA offered housing, the agency did so without realizing this elderly couple needed support services. As a result, TCCI took a month, ensured the couple had the right medications and worked with faith based and other partners to find an appropriate placement. A placement was found with a APS approved Care Home operated by a registered nurse in Sugarland, Texas. Adult Protective Services investigated the case and was able to retrieve the belongings of the elderly couple including their car which had been held by relatives.
Transitional Living ProgramTCCI retrieved a young mentally ill male from Rockport, Texas when the city was devastated by Hurricane Harvey. The male was part of a family unit which included his mother and the family dog. Due to his disability, relatives took in the mother and the dog, but literally left the young man in the streets during the storm. TCCI continues to provide shelter for the abused young man and has provided the medical and mental health care he requires.
For more information visit us at: http://www.thechiildrenscenterinc.org