During most of my life I have done volunteer work for my local community. I've lived in Las Vegas for 15 years and am self-employed as a Life and Trader's Coach.
I'm a volunteer with Red Rock Search and Rescue and the LV Metro Volunteer Police for the past 2-3 yrs, where I first encountered the mounting problem of the homeless. I decided to do something, when I saw a group of homeless men rummaging through a stack of clothes. I asked, "Is there anything you need you're not getting?” They said “Yes. We never get clean underwear, t-shirts and socks.”
That's where it all began, in May 2014. I started supplying new under-clothes monthly at the Metro "Giving Project", and each time I kept asking “Is there anything you need you’re not getting?” “Yes, flip-flops. They won't let us take a shower without something on our feet." So flip-flops were added to our "line." Over the past year we have changed, added and removed items as needed for daily survival. This not only helps those living in the streets, but also adds a bit of dignity to their already challenging life style.
Next we added questionnaires to gain a better understanding of how people became homeless and what they needed to turn their lives around. Our answers have proven invaluable in uncovering many issues in the community. And our challenge has become a Rubiks cube of solutions: Fix one thing and two others go out of whack.
Also I keep saying "We" because so many have been involved and helped. We have volunteers from the www.justserve.com site and from my church, as well as friends, neighbors, and even total strangers. Together we have been able to reach over 1500+ homeless individuals.
Now we are going to make it formal. We're working on the business plan, for our filing of the non-profit foundation, connecting to other organizations, researching the and understanding the City services available and "connecting the dots" to ultimately create a "Road-Map Out of Homelessness".
We've found that not only do the homeless not know what resources are available to them, but the servicing organizations are not linked together. It's time to join forces, coming together across the entire city to include Federal, State and City resources, as well as Faith-based, Community and private resources, to efficiently attack this huge problem, that's growing each day.
This is my purpose, passion and calling, to make this happen.
Mostly recently, we started a pilot program to test a small group of individuals, by working one-on-one to change their lives and help them regain their position as a productive member of the community. They are recently homeless (within 1year), have no addictions, and are healthy. We are providing them with transportation (bikes), resume help, job searching, coaching, and whatever it takes, and they must be willing to pay back and help the next one in line and become part of the new solution.
We have 3 men that are now on their way. They are proudly "Stepping-Up" to make the changes needed to grab back the lives they temporarily lost.
We will need greater funding to realize the bigger goal, but you can help today by giving what you can.
Thank you so much and the homeless in Vegas thank you too. Since they have no way of telling you, I will do it on their behalf.
Quote from Dan B. (in our pilot program)
“Robin became my coach at no less than the perfect timing as I was trying to emerge from being homeless, and needed a boost, as many do when in the same situation. A coach can only coach, leaving the player to play the game. In other words, Robin isn’t going to pull any of us from the depths of the homeless label, but she sure does help the cause
Robin has quickly become the most important person in my life; I say this without exaggeration. She helped me to navigate the toxic environment of living in a homeless shelter, and continues to guide my energy to focus on what’s important. And what’s important to me is living with purpose, not just living to survive. Understanding this, Robin manages to keep me moving forward toward achieving my goals. She tells me that my success is her reward for coaching me. Isn’t that totally something a great coach would say?
I look forward to rewarding her tremendously. But right now it’s the small rewards she keeps reaping, like hearing me report how great it was to get to sleep some amazing sleep in the comfort of my bedroom.”
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