Giving Back: C-U at Home Volunteering Opportunities

The Morning Show

ORGANIZATION NAME: C-U at Home

ON AIR GUESTS AND TITLES:

Rob Dalhaus III, Executive Director

Kelly-Jane Monahan, Phoenix Daytime Drop-In Center and Volunteer Coordinator

ISSUE TO ADDRESS: 

As the weather turns cold, we seek to raise awareness and advocate for the homeless population (our “friends without an address.”) Through our collaboration with the C-U Men’s Shelter, we have been able to see over 30 men per night utilizing this service showing us that there is a huge need in our community for homeless advocacy services. Ensuring our friends without an address have access to these services is absolutely necessary.

QUESTIONS (for the interviewer to ask the agency representative, please include answers as well):

Question: What are the main pieces of C-U at Home and how can volunteers get involved?

Answer: C-U at Home has five main pieces to the ministry and two exciting new collaborations:

Main 5: The Phoenix Daytime Drop-In Center, transportation ministry, transitional housing, education and advocacy, and street outreach. Volunteers are needed for each section of the ministry

New 2: a collaboration with the City of Champaign Township for “C-U at Work,” a program that offers an employment opportunity for our friends on the street where they are paid cash for their work thus promoting dignity and empowerment through work. Also, we collaborate with the C-U Men’s Shelter to operate the men’s emergency winter shelter which is housed in our building.

Question: What gaps is C-U at Home filling in the community and how are you funded in order to fill those gaps?

Answer: C-U at Home seeks to bridge the gap between those in our community with an address and those without. There is a severe negative stereotype that comes with the word “homeless” which is why we use the term “our friends without an address.” We seek to break down those stereotypes. We also provide needed transportation for those seeking services elsewhere in surrounding communities. We are also working hard to assist local law enforcement and hospitals when they encounter one of our friends.

Through the “C-U at Work” initiative and the collaboration with the C-U Men’s Shelter, we are filling two of the biggest concerns I hear from our friends on the street when they enter our daytime drop-in center. Those concerns are: “I don’t have any money” and “I don’t have a place to stay.” Now, with the “C-U at Work” program, they are able to work and make a little bit of money; and with the shelter, they are able to have a warm, dry place to stay at night.

C-U at Home is 100% funded by the community and receives no state or federal dollars. Our upcoming event, One Winter Night, brings in roughly 2/3 of our annual budget!

Question: How many volunteers are need for this community awareness event, One Winter Night?

Answer: We are looking for roughly 200 volunteers and 300 individuals to participate as “box dwellers” and stay in the cardboard boxes that night. Opportunities for that night include set up, tear down and clean up on Saturday morning, hospitality, sign waving, registration, donation collection, security. We also have several opportunities for individuals to get involved the week of the event beginning on Monday, January 28th all the way until the day of the event, Friday, February 1st.

DATE AND TIME OF VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY:

One Winter Night 2019 is Friday, February 1st with volunteer opportunities starting that day beginning at 12:00pm. We also have opportunities during the week of leading up to the event with evening opportunities running from 6:00pm-8:30pm Monday (1/28/19) through Wednesday (1/30/19) and on Thursday 1/31/19 from 1:00pm-4:00pm and 6:00pm-8:00pm.

How can we learn more about this event? Visit CUvolunteer.org

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