From Haircuts to Podiatry & Medical Care, More than 2 Dozen Local Providers Come Together for “One-Stop Shop” Event at Central Union Mission

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Over 12,000 of our neighbors throughout the Washington, D.C. area are currently living in shelters or on the streets.  In response to this growing challenge for our community, United Way of the National Capital Area (United Way NCA), the region’s preeminent convener, collaborator and catalyst for social change throughout the National Capital community, brought together more than two dozen local service providers to deliver critical and life-saving social services to 357 area residents living in shelters or on the streets in the Washington, D.C. region.

The 2nd annual daylong event, “Project Homeless Connect”, was held yesterday at the Central Union Mission located in downtown Washington, D.C. and provided a “one-stop shop” linking participants to services that would normally take months to obtain, if they were able to access them at all.  By pairing each participant with a volunteer navigator to help guide them through the process, 357 individuals were able to receive holistic care in a safe and respectful setting.

“By bringing together government agencies, nonprofit organizations and local businesses for ‘Project Homeless Connect’, we are able to provide critical services to hundreds of our neighbors currently experiencing homelessness,” said Rosie Allen-Herring, President and CEO, United Way of the National Capital Area.  “After last year’s event, over 80% of participants reported never having attended an event like this before and a majority of those served said without ‘Project Homeless Connect’ they otherwise would not have been able to access the services provided.”

L: United Way NCA president and CEO, Rosie Allen-Herring, joined by Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton and Timothy Johnson, United Way NCA vice president, Community Impact, speak at a media availability; R: Local service providers offer haircuts to those experiencing homelessness.

The 357 participants at yesterday’s “Project Homeless Connect” were able to access a range of services, including:  HIV testing, medical care, podiatry services, mental health services, haircuts, voter registration, legal consultations, employment assessments, emergency rental assistance, mental health services, and many more.

“We are thrilled to join with United Way of the National Capital Area and participate in Project Homeless Connect this year. It is our goal to help relieve the pain many of the folks in our area are experiencing and ensure they can access life-saving services,” said Dr. Howard Osterman of Foot and Ankle Specialists of the Mid-Atlantic. “Last year, we were also able to uncover underlying health issues that proved to save lives. We are proud to give back to our community alongside critical providers across the region.”

“Project Homeless Connect” is part of United Way NCA’s five-year, $12.3 million Community Commitment.  As part of that commitment, United Way NCA has set a financial stability goal to provide 100,000 residents with services that remove barriers to financial stability and affordable housing.  In addition to “Project Homeless Connect”, United Way NCA has also launched Financial Empowerment Centers throughout the metropolitan area to help assist individuals and families get on a path towards financial stability by providing free tax assistance, credit and housing counseling, access to free and/or low-cost banking products and financial planning tools.

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About United Way of the National Capital Area
Focusing on the critical areas of education, financial stability and health, United Way of the National Capital Area works to build a thriving community by addressing our region's most pressing challenges. United Way NCA has been improving lives by creating measurable impact in the District of Columbia, Northern Virginia, and Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties for more than 40 years.
United Way NCA is rated Gold-level with GuideStar, the world’s largest source of non-profit information that advances transparency and enables users to make better charitable giving decisions.
For more information about United Way of the National Capital Area, visit UnitedWayNCA.org.