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About Art4TheHomeless
Imagine... a movement inspired by the arts to open the eyes of Americans to the plight of their own people. Imagine, through art, music and poetry, we are shining a much needed light on our own crisis: HOMELESSNESS

Art4TheHomeless was once a blog called Colors of Ink with Blogcharm, which closed down. Nutang, became the new home of Colors of Ink and was renamed Art4TheHomeless, by a really good friend, Samantha Medd. She is now the Co-Founder of Art4TH.

Now Art4TH is a 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Organization that unites artists of all venues to promote homeless awareness in the US.

Art4TH does this through the Art4TH Webzine, a monthly online magazine that features a musician whose music plays throughout the website, a feature artist, and a feature writer while also featuring a homeless relief organization. All artists featured retain their copyrights and all of it is free. If you would like to be a featured artist, musician, or writer contact me at johnnacrider@att.net



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It's been ages
Wednesday. 4.9.08 10:19 am
Hi blog! I haven't forgotten you or my goals to help the homeless. I have been trying to stay off the streets myself. I have been at work. I work at the airport now and I love my job. I will not be able to go to college, though, unless my financial aid kicks in before my first fee is due--May the 1st. I am barely able afford to pay rent and my phone bill, and food also, but I am okay.

I stay near the Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless and see so much there. There are so many crackheads that just hand out on the corner day in and day out even when its raining! I know, I was walking from the train station home from work that night and it was a whole group of them. I hate that its a bad area, but there is nothing I can do about it. My goal helping the homeless is only helping those who want to help themselves. I don't feel sorry for any of them. They chose crack and decay, and obviously don't mind not bathing and living on the streets.

Some of them even hit on me talk about what they want to do to me. I even had one guy tell me straight up that he wants to fuck me. I told him that I wanted to kill him and left it at that. There is security where I stay at and one night when a few guys tried to follow me the guard ran them off. I stay to myself but I hate having to live in that area--but at least I have a roof over my head. I can fight, and I have almost killed before. I know how to take care of myself. I just hate that I may actually have to do it one day.

I do have a new link that I haven't put up yet. It's called Miriam's Kitchen. Miriamís Kitchen provides breakfast, case management, and transitional housing services. As part of their case management they offer After-Breakfast sessions which are "therapeutic workshops". The workshops are things like poetry, art, writing, and crafts. The purpose of these sessions is for the case workers to foster and maintain a safe environment where people feel comfortable seeking help and treatment.

You can check out their website at http://www.miriamskitchen.org/


As for college...I am not going to be able to go. SCAD is great, I went to one of their luncheons... but I just can't afford it. My financial aid has not kicked in and my matriculation fee is due on May 1 and a housing fee is due June 1. I owe the bank $413.00 it was $600.. and I have to pay that by May 31. That is more important to me. I took out the money to that place to stay. I know there is more to life than surviving, but right now I gotta survive otherwise I can't find out what else life has to offer. I gotta do what I gotta do and if that means not going to college and making my dreams come true, so be it.

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Well...
Friday. 3.21.08 10:07 am
I am not in a shelter or on the streets. Instead I owe Bank of America a lot of money and am paying almost $200 a week for a room but at least its shelter. I also started my job on Wednesday and Job Corps still owes me money. I am going to raise hell if they tell me AGAIN that they don't have the check yet. The IRS also owes me a few bucks so hopefully things will work out.

I have been unable to get online due to streets around the library being closed and the trainstation being closed as well. Why? Because it has been raining glass...literally. Last Friday's tornadoes tore up downtown and the Westin, among other buildings is shedding glass. It was like a maze just to get here today.

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homeless again
Monday. 3.17.08 5:04 pm
My friend who let me stay with her suddenly decided that I had to go. I can stay with her one more night, but tomorrow I have to go. I did pay her money to stay and I bought food for my first week. I have only been with her 2 weeks and a couple of days. She is pregnant and feels "stressed" and I feel stupid for trusting her. She said she feels bad about it, but you know what, fuck it. I am thru depending on "friends"

I will go to the Task Force for the Homeless tomorrow and hopefully find a shelter. If not, I guess I will sleep on the streets.

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New Art up!!
Monday. 3.10.08 6:21 pm
Placid Lake

Drawing of the painting Seperated



H2O


Wild Skies


Jazz Pianist

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Not much going on
Wednesday. 3.5.08 10:37 am
Okay I filed my taxes, sent off my financial aid and scholarship portfolio and am looking for work which is why I have not been online in a while. I am through with Job Corps and have put it behind me. I feel better. Loads better. No more fighting over broken dryers, no more disgusting cafeteria food, no more crap to deal with and no more drama. I should have never came to TCU. I should have gone to college in Brunswick at that Job Corps, but there is nothing I can do about it but press on. So I am going to SCAD in the fall and I have that to look forward to.

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Homeless Shelter of the Month goes to
Friday. 2.29.08 8:50 am
Interfaith Shelter of San Diego, CA!
The Mission of Interfaith is to coordinate the efforts of participating congregations, social service agencies, and governmental programs in order to provide shelter and other resources to homeless individuals and families and enable those we serve to move toward self-sufficiency while respecting their dignity as children of God.

Their Vision is to eliminate homelessness in the urban communities of San Diego County through a cooperative partnership with faith-based communities, related government programs, and social service agencies.

Interfaith Shelter Network is a program of the Ecumenical Council of San Diego County and is supported by the City and County of San Diego and private donations.

IF YOU NEED HELP IN THE SAN DIEGO AREA:

The Network has two programs to assist homeless San Diegans, The Rotational Shelter and El Nido Transitional Living Program. All the services provided require case management appointments. For other assistance, check 2-1-1 San Diego, a county-wide resource guide site.

The Rotational Shelter is an emergency, night-time shelter program utilizing area churches and synagogues to house, feed, and care for 12-15 men, women, and children throughout the County. Entrance to the shelter is obtained through screening by case management agencies.

What it is:

Small, volunteer-run shelters set up outside of downtown San Diego in congregational facilities (for example, a church hall, temple classroom, library, etc.).

Offers three meals a day, case management guidance to help you achieve your goals, bus tokens, showers and a lot of personalized attention (hyperlink to within page)

Rotates to a different congregation every two weeks

Length of stay:

Up to eight weeks, providing you follow your case plan and shelter rules.

Guidelines for admission:

Be interviewed at one of our contracted case management agencies while they have an opening;

Be clean and sober;

Be able to follow a case plan designed for you and with you so you can obtain your own housing;

Willing to cooperate with case manager and congregation volunteers

Willing and able to live with up to 12 or more other shelter guests

Able to follow rules of the shelter, which includes the above and other traditional shelter rules

Success:

More than half of our guests leave the shelter for their own housing.

Over 60% have obtained a source of income by the time they leave.

What is case management:

Starts with screening you for eligibility to the shelter;

Continues with helping you to achieve your goals:
Case manager and you identify goals and the steps necessary to achieve them. Case managers will give you assignments to carry out those goals and will provide you with resources to allow you to carry them out.
A goal could be housing or job search. Case manager would require a certain number of prospects be followed up and in turn would provide bus tokens and shelter as long as the requirements are met.
Can provide guidance even if not in shelter or after you obtain housing

El Nido ("the nest" in Spanish) is our transitional living program for homeless victims of domestic violence and their families. Located in central San Diego, in a confidential site for safety reasons, the project offers stability in housing while allowing the residents to offer emotional support to each other and less isolation during this stressful time in their lives. It also is respectful of residents' autonomy and provides as close to a real-life scenario as possible.

Residents live in an 11-unit apartment complex for up to a year or more and, with the assistance of social workers, obtain the counseling, child care, employment, educational, and transportation services they need to become self-sufficient. Each of the units was beautifully furnished by a local congregation.

Services offered include:

A secure, confidential, independent living environment

Ongoing case management services

A chance to build new lives

Referrals to community resources

Fully furnished 1-2 bedroom apartments

Positive & supportive program staff and volunteers

A community of families facing similar situations

Call the El Nido Program at (619) 563-9878 and the staff will complete a phone screening with you and describe the program in detail.

If you want to help or donate:

HOST CONGREGATIONS

The Interfaith Shelter Network is a unique collaborative program which unites congregations throughout San Diego County in providing emergency shelter for homeless individuals and families, who are screened and referred to the Network by local social service agencies. In each of seven regional branches, anywhere from three "host" congregations each sign up for two-week rotations during which time up to twelve homeless guests are housed and fed by congregation volunteers.

Additionally, "support" congregations within each branch are available to assist with overnights, meals and provision of toiletries and other supplies.

Requirements for HOST CONGREGATIONS

SPACE
- NOTE: Shelters are open from 5:30/6:00 p.m. to approx. 7:00 a.m. daily. Guests leave the premises during daytime hours.
- 750 square feet of space (60 sq.ft. per cot)
- Adequate ventilation; two independent exits; sufficient lavatory facilities
- Food preparation/storage area

VOLUNTEERS
- A volunteer coordinator to organize and oversee the entire shelter operation
- Overnight volunteers for 14 nights*
- Volunteers to prepare meals and provide transportation for guests*
- These services may also be provided by volunteers from support congregations.

SUPPORT CONGREGATIONS

Opportunities for Participation by SUPPORT CONGREGATIONS

VOLUNTEERS
- Support congregations can help by providing overnight volunteers for any of the 14 shelter nights
- Volunteers can provide meals and/or transportation for shelter guests
- Volunteers can prepare the "hygiene packets," individual supplies of toiletries which are provided to guests during their shelter stay

DONATIONS
- Support congregations can also assist host congregations by donating food supplies, linens, and/or funds to cover costs of laundering, transportation and other expenses incurred during the rotation.

For those who are unable to make the commitments required of a host congregation, being a support is a great way to involve congregation members in this cooperative effort to assist less fortunate members of the community.

Want to Volunteer?

There are a number of ways to volunteer your services to the Network, as our needs change rapidly to meet upcoming challenges.

- Volunteer for the Rotational Shelter Program
- Volunteer in the shelter - most congregations recruit volunteers from within their community, but few turn away willing hands. If your congregation is not part of the Network, contact us, and we'll try to put you in touch with a host congregation near you.
- Workshop presenters - the Network provides workshops to our homeless guest on career planning and on budgeting. Often, these volunteer presenters are in the Human Relations or Financial fields, but that is not a requirement. If you are interested, please forward us an application, found here.
- Office help - on occasion, we need assistance with basic office tasks or Mailings (labeling, stuffing and sorting); Compilation of volunteer packets (involves copying & sorting; Typing) ; Some data entry in computer (instruction/supervision provided); Occasional assistance with phones. Familiarity with IBM compatible PC's on a Windows platform would be helpful, but not necessary.

- Volunteer for El Nido
- As this is a domestic violence safe harbor program, volunteers must be carefully screened. Help is sometimes needed for respite child care, seasonal events, tutoring (both adults and children), donation pick-up, and transportation, to name a few.

To volunteer as a Workshop Presenter, for Office Help, or for El Nido, please fill out our volunteer Application

Donate

The largest single source category for our budgeted income is individual and corporate donations. While we maintain a very small staff and limited office, they do require funding to operate. The $90,000 we must raise annually helps leverage nearly $330,000 in donated efforts to the program. Won't you help and become a Special Friend of the Network?


Ecumenical Council of San Diego County
1880 Third Ave
San Diego,CA 92101
http://www.ecsd.org



Who We Are
The Ecumenical Council is an association of Christian congregations in San Diego County.
Programs also include other faith traditions and include Interfaith Shelter Network (Rotational Shelter & El Nido), Third World Opportunities, Called to Dance, and Names Project.






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this girl had the nerve to threaten me today
Sunday. 2.24.08 6:19 pm
Ok so this is not about the homeless but Atlanta Job Corps drama. I know, its petty, but it pissed me off. This girl who I supposedly sent these threatning emails to told me that, and I quote, "if anotha ho come up to me tellin me you are innocent adn your lies, we will both be gone, and you will be in the hospital. I will whoop yo ass,"

Right. She just couldn't let it die. I really suspect that she got on my computer while I was gone and sent herself these messages. I can't prove it, but deep down, she and I both know who the real culprit is. I just feel pity for her that she has to go to all these lengths to get attention.

Ms. Matthews, the Center Director was gracious enough to extend my termination date until this up-coming Friday. Also great news for the center is that our SGA (Student Government) were selected to go to DC and speak to Congress about the center--congrats to all of them! May they have a safe flight to and from DC.

I have another job interview, I hope I get the job. I also have a place to stay if I cannot get my own place so I am not too worried. God knows what I want to do with my life and he is in full control. People like this girl in my class are just lost and confused. Me, I am just going to put it all behind me and keep it movin.

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Got to watch my own blood squirt across the room and onto the wall
Friday. 2.15.08 12:51 pm
Yesterday, I broke my soy sauce bottle. Today I took it out--the garbage. I even double bagged it and put it in another bag. So this glass was bound and determined to get under my skin--literally. I ran to wellness, the lady told me I had to wait. Just a moment here, I am BLEEDING blood running down my leg but I have to sit down and WAIT? I told them to give me some bandages and neosporine went into their little bathroom and cleaned it up myself--but I had to lift my leg and brace it on the toilet, which caused the squirting--and I freaked. I cursed, screamed, you know, the whole she-bang and all. One of the nurses told me to be quite and be respectful. I showed her the mess and she didn't really seem to care--said it was nothing. She was right, it was nothing, but BLOOD!

It was a deep cut, but small. I took pain meds for it and am slightly limping. Now I look back and think to myself, I am officially qualified to be in a CSI show!

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