2020 Community Impact Grant
Legal-name: Urban Community Outreach
Address: 241 Cedar Avenue
City: Long Beach
Ranking-title: Julie Lie, Executive Director
Contact-First-name: Julie Lie
Title: Executive Director
Grant_purpose: Provide essential services to youth and families with children with the purpose of mitigating the fear and anxiety of living without food and shelter thereby enhancing school stability, educational focus, progress and success.
Misson: To advance the interests and promote the welfare of the economically disenfranchised and homeless people in Long Beach by offering a welcoming environment to provide respite, nutrition, opportunity, and hope.
How-many-years: Three years
How-many-individuals: 86 under the age of 18 and 287 ages 18-29 (2019)
What-is-project: The Urban Community Outreach (UCO) Drop-In Center provides food and clothing, a computer lab, housing assistance and medical services to those who are homeless or potentially homeless. Our Drop-In Center is open to our clients once a week and during the week, permanent housing assistance, temporary/transitional housing and transportation services are available from staff. Four percent of our clients are under the age of 18 and 14 percent are ages 18-29. Those homeless youth and families with children in need of adequate schooling without disruption are of particular concern. Housing, food, medical and utility assistance provide the core underpinnings of stability to enable children/youth to focus on their education mitigating the stress and fear of living without food and shelter.
The proposed UCO project is to expend Foundation grant funding exclusively on those homeless youth and families with children in need of UCO services. Transportation, food, housing and the cost of school materials will be the focus of this grant request of
$ 15,000 to be spent over three years. With the provision of essential UCO services to our clients, the educational focus of those youth and children will be enhanced significantly.
Homelessness has reached a crisis level in Long Beach and UCO’s mission is to advance the interests and promote the welfare of the economically disenfranchised and homeless. In 2019 UCO provided rental assistance to 30 adults and 39 children and helped 50 families pay utility and other outstanding bills. UCO secured 259 transitional/motel nights to 45 people, including 11 families and 14 individuals. Now
more than ever services to homeless youth and families with children are needed to ensure their home life is stable which contributes to and enables their educational progress and advancement. UCO can provide the underpinnings for this through the critical services it provides.
How-will-you-succeed: UCO will create a new client tracking system for this segment of our homeless clientele. As we expend Foundation grant funds on our clients who are youth and families with children, staff will follow up with these clients to monitor and measure the stability of their home environment relative to sustaining adequate food and shelter thereby mitigating potential disruption to schooling. Successes over a three year period are anticipated and expected. Monthly and annual reporting of metric results will be prepared. After grant funding is expended, UCO will continue its ongoing pursuit of other funding sources to address this particular client need.
Who-are-you: In 2006 members of First Congregational Church Long Beach opened the church campus to feed members of the homeless community. From this effort, Urban Community Outreach was created and incorporated as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in 2008. The mission is “To advance the interests and promote the welfare of the economically disenfranchised and homeless people in Long Beach, CA by offering a welcoming environment to provide respite, nutrition, opportunity and hope.” Our Drop-In Center serves thousands of meals annually to over 2,000 unduplicated guests on Sundays. Over 1,700 volunteers contributed to this effort in 2019 along with a chef and operations manager. An IT specialist runs a computer lab with internet access for guest use. The computer lab is available to youth to undertake homework assignments and online schooling. Medical services are provided twice a month by a nurse and physician. Hygiene kits, cell phones and clothing are offered each month as well. Assistance with temporary/transitional housing and permanent housing, transportation and utility bills are available from our full-time Housing Coordinator and the Executive Director.
UCO partners with the City of Long Beach, Cypress College and Cal State University – Dominguez Hills, County of Los Angeles, Catholic Charities, Food Finders, Safe Refuge, Mental Health America and others to provide the aforementioned services. Our projects are service-based ranging from food service, housing and transportation assistance, medical services and the payment of unforeseen client expenses. The provision of UCO services to youth and families with children is needed to secure a stable home life thereby enhancing their educational focus, progress and success.