New Non-Profit to Solve Homelessness Efficiently and Effectively

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Hi everyone.

Please read on, and join us for an organizational lunch meeting of a new non-profit “Home Run Events Inc.” at NOON on Monday, October 27th at The Salvation Army Community Center to learn more.

Most of you know that when I started The Salvation Army Home Run 2 years ago that it was my strong desire to grow it into a premier event that ALL shelter providers in Delta County could count on as a major fundraiser for their organizations. With St. Vincent de Paul, the Alliance Against Violence and Abuse, Lutheran Social Services Voices for Youth and The Salvation Army, Delta County is blessed with at least 4 indisputably worthy organizations who work around the clock to shelter our neighbors in times of greatest need.

I believe that the time has come for our shelter providers to work collectively to attract donations and additional sponsorships and grants from outside of Delta County and the Upper Peninsula and to build an endowment the interest from which will eventually eliminate the need for these agencies to compete with one another year after year for portions of the same small pot of local dollars. It will also eliminate the need to sit as hostages to ever dwindling government funding sources. I also strongly believe that if, as agencies with dedicated and caring supporters, we GIVE our community active, fun, family-oriented events that the GETTING part will almost take care of itself. We can enjoy ourselves and raise a new generation of healthy young volunteers at the same time.

Since I could not find a way to accomplish this under the umbrella of The Salvation Army, with the permission of Major Cox I wrote and received a grant from the Community Foundation of Delta County for $2400 to cover the legal expenses of starting up a new non-profit which will create and implement joint fundraising events in our community that also employ on-line fundraising techniques to the fullest possible extent. There is some momentum started already toward that end with The Salvation Army Home Run going into its third year. It will be up to the board of the new non-profit (current working title “Home Run Events Inc.”) to determine from the outset the completely objective methods/percentages by which proceeds from joint fundraising events will be distributed to each agency. This will be a community effort, not a Salvation Army project. I needed a non-profit fiduciary in order to apply for the grant, and Major Cox was kind enough to let me do so through them.

This is a good year to launch a new approach to the cause of homelessness in Delta County. It is a milestone anniversary year for OSF St. Francis Hospital, a generous previous sponsor of The Salvation Army Home Run and supporter of local social services.

There is more. The vision has evolved. We have an opportunity through this new non-profit to revitalize neglected residential property in Delta County and in the process create a truly financially self-sufficient emergency shelter and transitional housing program. This would be accomplished by renovating dispersed properties (probably beginning in the DDA district) with government tax incentives available to our low income community, MSHDA funds and by seeking grants from major manufacturers and suppliers of “zero energy” products to accomplish the most energy efficient renovations possible. These properties would be leased to area agencies for transitional housing for a pre-determined set period (5 or 6 years, no longer) and then sold to a waiting list of private buyers of a similar demographic to the clients that Matt Sviland is currently targeting with his Ludington Lofts project. The capital gains from the sale of these rehab properties would then be re-invested into the next rehab project, etc. Rather than potentially harming property values by locating shelter and transitional living facilities in the same neighborhood over long periods of time, we can actually improve property values in several neighborhoods and solve housing issues at the same time. I’ve already discussed my ideas with Jim Davis at MSHDA and he likes what he hears.

Obviously I could go on for a long time. Please join us to learn more and consider whether or not you would like to be appointed to the board of this new corporation.

The tentative one hour agenda for the organizational meeting at noon on Monday, October 27th is as follows:

Overview of the purpose for Home Run Events Inc. and progress to date
Determine method for nomination of officers and board members
Establishment of incorporation advisory teams
Determine next meeting date and location

PLEASE RSVP so we can get a lunch count.

ALSO, please send me an e-mail if you wish to be considered for a board membership or one of the three positions of President, Treasurer or Secretary. Obviously we will need a voting member from each of the shelter agencies mentioned above. They have each expressed a willingness to participate.

Thanks for listening. Thanks for caring.


Youth & Rural Revitalization

Actively engaging youth and their families toward both personal fitness and community involvement will slow drain of rural population migration to urban areas.

One of the ways this youth engagement is accomplished in Delta County, Michigan is through family-oriented, community health and fitness events. See The Salvation Army Home Run as an example.

About this Blog

Home Run Events is a forum for solutions that create Sustainable, Healthy, "Inclusive", Neighborhood Environments (SHINE) in our communities - beginning with the homeless.

We aspire to relocalize rural economies through affordable net-zero energy housing, local organic agriculture and financially self-sufficient social services programs.

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