In the News

This past week, I had an article published in The Bridge, Montpelier’s independent newspaper. That article was an edited version of two of my earlier posts about houselessness/homelessness (found here and here). Since that time, I’ve had several folks contact me about doing more together to find sustainable solutions to the housing shortage in our area. I’m excited to see where our efforts together might lead.

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5 Responses

  1. An excellent article too Becca. Congrats!

    Good to hear about the contacts on the subject as well as potential future action as a result. When it comes to these matters from start to implementation, please count this ‘houseless’ activist in! — including those who have been or are living ‘houseless’ (aka homeless) or otherwise at great risk of becoming so will be extremely crucial, especially since — as you are already well aware — the old politics of exclusion no longer work and only harm all concerned.

  2. Thanks, M. I hope we can get some agencies, churches, and political folks together and affect some change. But anything we do needs to be done with the insight and input of those who live, have lived, or are on the brink of living houseless/homeless. Too often, I think people make choices about what needs to be done from positions of privilege and security, and these ‘solutions’ are not what is actually helpful where the rubber hits the road. I know I have been guilty of that in the past.

    Thanks again for all your insight, my friend!

    Shalom,
    Becca

  3. You’re welcome Pastor Becca. Agreed. Thanks.

    As far as helping to pull together some of the entities you mentioned, as I might have suggested before and if he has not already been either in contacted or in touch on the subject, Don Mandelkorn, Director of the AHS Barre District Field Services ( http://humanservices.vermont.gov/departments/ahs-fs-folder/barre-district-office ), could prove both a crucial and very useful person in this regard.

    In addition, I also may be able to help as well in my own ways with this too in one manner or another, plus with possibly helping to get interested citizens and fellow travelers on board maybe; as long as there will be both equal and mutual standing for all involved, with no one individual or group being a greater expert on these matters than anyone else, just fellow citizens coming together to raise a barn so-to-speak, each with their own expertize to help build a community project: i.e., community itself. The housing will end up being secondary, although crucial as it is in its own right.

    If you have not already read it yet, check out something I wrote years and was published in different local newspapers years ago: i.e., Homeless Challenge:
    http://morganbrown.googlepages.com/homeless-challenge2k

    As far as the planning segment goes, actually my faith was not in the planning so much as what can sometimes happen when people come and then seriously pull together to problem solve and then end up building and creating community and from that help find ways to meet unmet needs of members of that community for the common good and betterment of everyone concerned. I still believe that such is possible as well as doable, even when it comes hard or through some difficulty or adversity at first, maybe even more so when it does; although I would rather it go much more smoother and without conflict so as to not waste resources, time or others who could have helped in building something even better with them rather than without them.

  4. M,

    Amen to that!

    I had a man who lived on the streets of Boston tell me once that what he needed, more than money or food or a place to sleep, was to be treated with dignity. I had initially tried to make him ‘a cause,’ and he corrected me and set me on a new path with a new understanding. I have never forgotten that.

    What you describe is, in my opinion, what a church is– it is certainly how the Methodist Movement began: concerned citizens (and in the case of the Methodists, Anglican Christians), coming together around a common experience and building community. Other programs such as educational programs for children, and assistance programs such as the future Salvation Army came out of that, but first they built a community.

    You have my word that this is one of my priorities, and I hear you loud and clear. We build a coalition, a community of people with a common goal, and if we also end up building/creating housing that’s a secondary thing.

    Becca

  5. […] some comments, Morgan, another wonderful man I’ve met recently, has been talking with me about the housing […]

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