Love Abounds Here will host its monthly community resource fair from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 25 at the Yelm Community Center.
The fair traditionally aims to provide assistance to those in need on the final Thursday of each month, but the upcoming event was moved to Friday because of Thanksgiving and is geared more toward assisting homeless individuals.
The fair will put an emphasis on handing out warm winter clothes on Black Friday to coincide with a care package project for homeless individuals organized by Roy resident Mikayla Ramey.
The organization was looking for donations of warm coats, jeans, hats, gloves and blankets.
“We just want to provide items to keep these individuals warm in the cold, cold weather,” Debra Larson, the director of Love Abounds Here, said. “It’s the least we can do for the less fortunate.”
Larson said Love Abounds Here is in the process of providing a warming station for homeless individuals with help from the City of Yelm.
Love Abounds Here will also provide a free hot lunch during the community resource fair.
Some of the vendors at the fair will include Capital Recovery Center, the Family Support Center, Thurston County Volunteer Legal Services and Community Health Plan of Washington.
“All those different services are available to people who need them. Usually, they’ll have to drive to Olympia, Lacey or Tumwater to get the services,” Larson said. “This community fair allows easier access to our citizens who need it.”
Another vendor at the event will provide individuals with resources on coordinated housing.
“I sit down and interview the individual, and we will fill out a form called HEAT,” Larson said. “It’s aimed at equity and housing, and assesses the vulnerability of the person and if there are any barriers such as addiction.”
Larson said the program takes other factors into account like family size, race, and sexual orientation. Once the HEAT form is filled out, it is filed at the Family Support Center, which is the coordinated entry point. The Family Support Center will then select applicants for housing based on the information they received.
“It can be a bit complicated, but the bottom line is they’re taking in the most vulnerable people, who are the people least likely to be housed,” Larson said.
She said the housing provided through the program includes shelters, apartments and other services.
The Love Abounds Here community resource fair is sponsored by the Community Health Plan of Washington.
Contributions to the nonprofit can be made online at www.loveaboundshere.com.
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