Sunday, March 21, 2021

Sunflower Harbor homeless outreach After the storm

Aaron has graduated our program! He'll be staying a while longer as a peer mentor, but it's making plans to achieve housing stability. 

We got through the historic winter storm relatively unscathed. Couple of burst pipes, but no significant damage. 

We updated our registry. It has a list of the needs for the next step of each project we're working on. www.myregistry.com/giftlist/sunflowerharbor

When we went to buy some things at the Oos, they sweetly donated 2 twin mattresses and a box spring! 

The guys installed a new sink in the front bathroom and made sure it worked. It's so rustic and pretty!

Even though the governor has lifted the covid restrictions, we are still going to be following them here at Sunflower Harbor for the time being for the safety of our guys. 

When the world overwhelms, I find it the best thing to do is to start by accomplishing just one little thing. -Ducky NCIS

Here at Sunflower Harbor homeless outreach, we try to end homelessness one person at a time. We have a little different approach to it than some. Most days, we're expirementing.  Most days, we're tailoring our care approach to the individuals we're serving. 

Ours is a work program. We also teach a lot of things as we go. Our workers begin filling out an independence plan by setting goals that will allow them to reach independence. These sometimes include getting an ID, job, phone, bank account, and housing. We also encourage them to add personal goals.  Once that is complete, we begin helping them reach those goals. 
We teach them skills that will help them get a job like resume building, interview practice, and job search tips and tricks. 
While they are searching for a job, we go over personal responsibility and begin the hard work of looking at why they became homeless and how they can lessen the chances of it happening again. We discuss work ethic and how to get ahead.
 They learn whatever skills are needed to keep the place running smoothly. Oil changes, plumbing, carpentry, cleaning, animal care, gardening, ECT. 
Once they have secured a job and gotten their first full paycheck, we learn budgeting, meal planning, and saving. They are now ready to begin graduation preparation. We help them gather what they'll need in a new home. We help them figure what they can afford to pay for rent and utilities. We help them set longer term goals and begin to work towards them while saving enough to secure a place to live. 
They graduate as soon as they complete all the steps, but can remain a while to be sure they can remain in stable housing when they leave. 
It's a long process.  Growth is sometimes painful, but it's so worth it when we get a tour of their new space! 

Want to be part of the solution? Donate through our website www.sunflowerharbor.org 
we take PayPal or cash app. 

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Sunflower Harbor homeless outreach work program spotlight Jerrod

Sunflower Harbor homeless outreach 
Work program spotlight: Jerrod Moran
Jerrod had been amazing to have around! He organized most of the house room by room. He helped clean and organize the yard, including helping build a fence to contain our wayward rescue pups. He's helped with every project since he arrived. He's a self starter and assigns himself tasks as he sees things that need done. 

On his personal journey to independence since he got here, he has gotten ID, gotten a job, got his temporary CNA, and worked his bottom off. He's working on getting his CNA transferred from another state. 

From homeless and aimless to living with purpose in a few short months. We are so proud of him! He'll be graduating the program soon, but plans to stay around to help run Sunflower Harbor after graduation. We really look forward to it! 


He's personally responsible for taking guys off the streets to stable housing. He's excellent at all the networking that has to happen to coordinate care and housing for our homeless population. 

He goes with us on his rare days off from work to deliver food and supplies and check on our homeless folks. 

Our veterans love him. They only have positive things to say about him. "He's always ready to help and friendly. He's always dependable and a man of his word. He has a great sense of humor and is fun to hang out with." " Jerrod has a positive attitude and willingness to help. He's a really understanding person with a personality of caring." 

Jerrod working on the back bathroom

Jerrod works with our pups and helps with their care. They adore him! 
Want to help create great successes like this one? We're running several fundraisers right now! Go to our website at www.sunflowerharbor.org to donate! You can now donate through paypal, cashapp, ourregistry, or facebook! 

Choose how your donation is spent! 
-bunkhouse to more than double capacity
-veterans fund to help with anything our vets need
-Job search fund to help with clothes, ID, and such needed to secure jobs
-legal fund to help file for nonprofit status
-general fund for anything we need to keep running

Cash App: $Sunflowerharbor

Registry has a list of our needs 
https://www.myregistry.com/giftlist/sunflowerharbor

Know someone who would benefit from one of our programs? Text Kristy 214.622.7222 or email kristy@sunflowerharbor.org our program is a lot of work for participants, but so worth it to grow and break the cycle of homelessness! 

SUNFLOWER HARBOR HOMELESS OUTREACH 

www.sunflowerharbor.org 




Monday, February 15, 2021

Sunflower Harbor homeless outreach mid February winter storm

Roads are icy so we're all staying in. Spent much of the 12th doing a cat rodeo. Rounded up all the barn cats and ferals to bring them inside. Temps went negative this weekend. Pipes in the back side of house froze even though they were dripping. We'll check them out closer after we thaw. 

Doing a few crafts. First step is photo transfer. Once it's fully dry, I'll add the wood burning part. We'll be selling these customized as a fundraiser soon! This one is one of our class of 2020. 
Board member Robert Kirkpatrick, II had been here all week with his girlfriend, Chelsea. It's been delightful having the extra hands around. 

Sunday, January 31, 2021

shenanigans at Sunflower Harbor January 31, 2021

Getting into our life patterns. We are a family of 7 now. We're currently have 2 disabled vets and 2 workers plus our coordinators Tony, Kristy, and Anton. 

Sunflower Harbor has been busy busy this month! Everyone is working hard to make Sunflower Harbor better than ever!

Running at capacity all month. We are rearranging to be able to increase capacity and still follow social distancing guidelines, including building walls to divide our dorm into 2 rooms. Just in time, too because another vet arrived this week! We lucked out and got someone who knows horticulture and many handyman skills! He will be a great asset to Sunflower Harbor! We look forward to seeing the changes he makes to the ranch!

Guys are meeting their personal goals like crazy!

Aaron is back in college! He's been working really hard to complete the courses online and make good grades all while helping where he can around the ranch.

Jarrod is working on getting his CNA transferred to Texas. Meantime, he's working to keep Sunflower Harbor running smoothly and doing a LOT to make the place better! He's cleaned and reorganized the kitchen, sitting room, both bathrooms, and is currently working on the dining room. 

Everyone helped rebuild the fence to keep our pups in. Rogue and Longhorn had been finding new escape routes every time we fixed one. This time, I think we've got them beat! They have half the yard space as before, but its still a large area to play in. The part of the yard we blocked the dogs from will be part of our garden this year. 


In the back bathroom, we installed a tub and showerhead. Then, we put up curtains, tiled the floor, replaced the toilet seat, and added a heater. We did it all with found and donated things. Its a nice room to relax in now. In the front bathroom, the shower curtain was replaced and the whole room was reorganized. Small changes that made a huge difference!


We're running several fundraisers right now! Go to our website at www.sunflowerharbor.org to donate! You can now donate through paypal, cashapp, ourregistry, or facebook! 

  1. bunkhouse to more than double capacity

  2. veterans fund to help with anything our vets need

  3. job search fund to help with clothes, ID, and such needed to secure jobs

  4. legal fund to help file for nonprofit status

  5. general fund for anything we need to keep running


We have  higher than normal case management hours per client. That's really where programs like ours make a difference. We can spend more time per person than some programs so we are able more to give the tools needed to stay stable once they are on their own two feet. We have time. There is no rush or time limits to get them gone so the next person can be served. Our only restriction is the lack of funds. 



Monday, December 21, 2020

Sunflower harbor work program spotlight

 My name is Aaron Feldkamp. I am a homeless non combative Vet currently enrolled in Sunflower Harbor work program. Today is Decemeber 17th 2020. I have lived with two of the most kindest people I've met since I came to Texas. I've been here since Novemeber 30th. I got a job last week at KFC. The things we do around the house is clean learn how to budget and adequately handle our finances. If a person comes here and doesn't have thier identification card or license the program director Mrs. Darlene will help them figure it out. She is very nice and gentle and extremely supportive and understanding for someone like me coming from a different lifestyle and background not many have. She is the nurturer of the Sunflower Harbor part of Mr. And Mrs. Anton Rogers ever evolving and developing management. Mr. Roger's brings an entirely different aspect to this program. Where as Darlene harbors us homless men and women Mr. Anton is all about giving a hand up not a hand out. If you dont know how to work or never hold down a job it doesn't matter. The only thing that matters is your consistency in trying your best always. The rest is if you dont know something Anton or Darleene will teach you. I've learned many things from Mr. Anton such as to not be so hard on myself. Not to rely in others and to make everything happen and manifest in my life by my own hands and with faith and confidence in myself. Also, I've learned consideration for others is a kept component of working together in a household setting. Since I began my program at Sunflower Harbor I have got a job and also work for Anton and Darlene when im not working my 9 to 5 job. We do things like clean the property up and deliver fast food and grocery products to people who can't or dont have the immune system to go out shopping in this pandemic.


Visit our website www.sunflowerharbor.org 


Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Monthly Update December 1, 2020

Www.sunflowerharbor.org Monthly update December 1, 2020


Working with the homeless in Abilene is a blessing. The city and people are dedicated to making homelessness in Abilene a rare and temporary thing. 


We are currently actively helping one person in our work program. He is currently occupying multiple positions. Workers do not have to live in the dorm to work for us, but our current helper is. We have a fundraiser set up in our registry to help our helper get on his feet. https://www.myregistry.com/giftlist/sunflowerharbor


Capacity with Corona limitations is 3. When corona passes, we will have 6 beds. 


Still fundraising for bunkhouse building materials. bunkhouse will more than double our capacity for the work program. Check out our registry for our needs for the next building phase. https://www.myregistry.com/giftlist/sunflowerharbor


Reminders:

Blessings bags. We are currently out of bags and everything that goes into them except toothbrushes. We rarely make a new contact now that we've been active in abilene a while. The way we've been handling it is asking what's needed and having one of our Abilene sunflower ladies deliver it. We're doing a lot of follow up. Checking on people we've placed and those we couldn't.  Followup is sometimes the difference between someone being able to stay in stable housing or homelessness reoccurring.  We use the blessings bags to break the ice and find out what their real needs are. We've given out 12 since last blog, all adjusted for the individual's need.

Placements. We do most placements using direct help from locals. Our Abilene Sunflower Ladies are great at networking. They find placement for the individuals we come in contact with. We can not place everyone, but Abilene has an excellent network designed to help the homeless, so those we can help are easier to help and we've been able to help many more than I ever imagined this year! 3 placements have been made since last blog. One of our biggest hurdles for placements is down-payment + first month's rent which not everyone qualifies for help with. Once we have other projects handled financially, We'll be setting up a fund for this. Look for it sometime in 2021. 

Job search fund. Our job search fund helps with clothes, and identification needed to land a job.  Job search fund can always use help. Many times, we can get locals to directly pay for these things, but not always. The fund is set up as a loan, but not everyone who uses it pays back, so it does need a boost from time to time. https://www.myregistry.com/giftlist/sunflowerharbor

Www.antonrogers.com is still running fundraisers for blessings packs for us. Bookmarks, t-shirts, bags and more are on sale there and all procedes from the Sunflower Harbor tab go to buying supplies for blessings packs! 

Cash App: $Sunflowerharbor


Registry https://www.myregistry.com/giftlist/sunflowerharbor

SUNFLOWER HARBOR HOMELESS OUTREACH 

www.sunflowerharbor.org 

Thursday, November 5, 2020

This week in service November 5, 2020

Www.sunflowerharbor.org 


 Our board meeting was Nov 1 via text to allow for social distancing and safety. 

1. Implemented a registry for Sunflower Harbor on registry. Com

https://www.myregistry.com/giftlist/sunflowerharbor

I've just begun adding things to it. It should be complete in a week or so, life permitting. 

2. We discussed how amazing Sunflower Harbor is doing and how we surpassed some goals and fell short of other goals set this year. 

Goal 1: 12 placements.  Achieved 60 direct placements and 6 who entered our intake program achieved their stable housing goal 

Goal 2: make enough in donations to support our mission. We have not achieved this, but we have done a lot more than we ever dreamed we could! We need more community support to make this goal. 

Goal 3: networking. We've surpassed our expectations on this. We now refer to several agencies and know where to get help locally for most anyone who wants it. 

Other milestones: 

329 blessings bags

7 people helped getting ID

8 job placements, but lots more job referrals 

2 of 2 veterans who stayed in our emergency housing moved into stable housing

Direct placements of 5 veterans in stable housing with the help of various veterans programs 


We discussed fundraising.  

We set up a registry at myregistry.com that we will be adding to over the next couple of weeks. 

Visit  https://www.myregistry.com/giftlist/sunflowerharbor

We have a long list of needs on our website www.sunflowerharbor.org under outreach and in house tabs that will slowly be integrated into our registry. 

1. Currently,  we are raising money to finish our bunkhouse. We also take donations of materials new and used that we can use to build. We need insulation for the next step and yellow romex. 

Share the fundraiser! Current layout for the bunkhouse will allow us to have emergency housing for up to 15! We have beds for 5 at the moment. The bunkhouse will have a full kitchen, full bathroom with a shower, and laundry room. We have many things we need for it, but still lack many building materials and appliances.  We would like it built before the weather gets dangerously cold. If you can give toward this project, please do! Winter is coming on us quick! 

More twin beds will be needed once it's complete. 

Capacity is currently 6 beds plus couches. The bunkhouse will increase this. 

2. We need interview clothes for the job search project. We also need cash funds to pay for ID. We currently have funds for 1 person to get ID.

3.  Antonrogers.com is running a fundraiser for us with t-shirts,  necklaces, bookmarks, totes, and more

4. Tentatively scheduling a 2 night valentine's fundraiser. Details to be hashed out by the event committee soon! Halloween went well, raising almost $100

5. Memorial plaques will be available for purchase soon. You can choose to have them shipped to you or put on the wall of the SunflowerHarbor bunkhouse.  

6. Random needs: need truck to pick up donations and haul off trash. Need the tiller fixed for the spring garden. We need veggie plants for the garden. Seeds did not work last year. We need our own commerce website to put items we have for fundraising. We need leather to make more purses and wallets with sunflowers on them for fundraisers. 

7. Gift cards while we do not give out gift cards, they do allow us to buy specific things we need. Stores we buy things from a lot are dollar tree (blessings bags), home depot (building supplies for bunkhouse), Walmart (most other needs)

We then reminded everyone to go out in teams.  Do not approach strangers alone.  

We need a couple more people on the event committee! You don't have to be a board member to help! 

Item donations have been awesome this week! Getting more and more of the household items we need for the bunkhouse! 

Reminders:

Blessings bags. We are currently out of bags and everything that goes into them except toothbrushes. We rarely make a new contact now that we've been active in abilene a while. The way we've been handling it is asking what's needed and having one of our Abilene sunflower ladies deliver it. We're doing a lot of follow up. Checking on people we've placed and those we couldn't.  Followup is sometimes the difference between someone being able to stay in stable housing or homelessness reoccurring.  We use the blessings bags to break the ice and find out what their real needs are. We've given out 34 since last blog, all adjusted for the individual's need.

Placements. We do most placements using direct help from locals. Our Abilene Sunflower Ladies are great at networking. They find placement for the individuals we come in contact with. We can not place everyone, but Abilene has an excellent network designed to help the homeless, so those we can help are easier to help and we've been able to help many more than I ever imagined this year! 12 placements have been made since last blog. One of our biggest hurdles for placements is down-payment + first month's rent which not everyone qualifies for help with. Once we have other projects handled financially, We'll be setting up a fund for this. Look for it sometime in 2021. 

Job search fund. Our job search fund helps with clothes, and identification needed to land a job.  Job search fund can always use help. Many times, we can get locals to directly pay for these things, but not always. The fund is set up as a loan, but not everyone who uses it pays back, so it does need a boost from time to time. 

Www.antonrogers.com is still running fundraisers for blessings packs for us. T-shirts, bookmark, totes, bags and more are on sale there and all procedes from the Sunflower Harbor tab go to buying supplies for blessings packs! 

Cash App: $Sunflowerharbor


Registry https://www.myregistry.com/giftlist/sunflowerharbor

SUNFLOWER HARBOR HOMELESS OUTREACH 

www.sunflowerharbor.org 


Sunflower Harbor homeless outreach After the storm

Aaron has graduated our program! He'll be staying a while longer as a peer mentor, but it's making plans to achieve housing stabilit...