WESTLAKE – Community West Foundation and United Way of Greater Cleveland offer financial support to Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry (LMM), the organization is serving as the fiscal agent for the seasonal shelter program. The program, funded by the City of Cleveland, and managed by LMM and the Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless (NEOCH), opens four additional shelters to keep chronically unhoused individuals safe.
LMM grew concerned when they learned that the timing of reimbursements for the program did not match when the partner shelters needed to be open. Community West Foundation and United Way were able to develop a financial package to ensure LMM had the cash flow needed to run the program.
“Without this option for people who are unhoused, they would be outside freezing on the streets,” commented Marty Uhle, President and CEO at Community West Foundation. “When we heard of the challenges LMM was facing, we immediately started brainstorming how we could be of assistance to them.”
Community West turned to other funders in Cleveland to join the effort to support LMM, and United Way of Greater Cleveland quickly stepped up. United Way seeks to interrupt the cycle of poverty by treating its symptoms, including homelessness and hunger, through its Community Hub for Basic Needs and upending its root causes, particularly racism and access to affordable housing, through its Impact Institute.
“Every person deserves a safe, warm place to call home – it’s a basic human right,” said Sharon Sobol Jordan, president and CEO of United Way of Greater Cleveland. “United Way is working tirelessly with our many partners to make this our reality in Greater Cleveland. We are proud to partner with LMM and Community West to ensure that immediate shelter is available during these cold winter months through these critical warming centers.”
The seasonal shelter partners are open now and operate daily from evening until morning. NEOCH’s street outreach team works to ensure those in need get to these shelters, which offer an additional 130 beds to people experiencing homelessness from mid-November to mid-April.
Community West Foundation’s mission is to advance the health and well-being of the community by making grants to local non-profits that provide basic needs services, like shelters for those 2 | Page experiencing homelessness. In 2022, they granted under $4 million to agencies in Cuyahoga and Lorain Counties.
United Way has three core community strategies- economic mobility, health pathways, and housing stability – and believes that working together on these targeted initiatives can make the most meaningful impact in the fight against poverty. United Way’s 211 also serves as an essential service, providing 24/7/365 assistance for all who need shelter, food, and thousands of additional community resources.
About Community West Foundation:
The mission of Community West Foundation is to advance the health and well-being of our community. The staff and Board of Directors are guided by the words in Matthew 25:35-40. While their mission is based on these teachings, they are not affiliated with any particular religion. Their grantees, friends, and donors come from diverse faiths and practices. For more information, contact Community West Foundation at 440-360- 7370 or visit communitywestfoundation.org
About United Way of Greater Cleveland:
Founded in 1900, United Way of Greater Cleveland is a local, independent nonprofit organization dedicated to fighting poverty across the Greater Cleveland area. The largest private-sector funder of health and human services in Northeast Ohio, United Way invests in efforts that address poverty using a two-pronged approach. The first prong focuses on the daily issues affecting those living in poverty, the Community Hub for Basic Needs. The second drives research and innovation through the Impact Institute, a think tank with an action plan focused on identifying long-term solutions to break the cycle of poverty. For more information, visit unitedwaycleveland.org and twitter.com/UnitedWayCLE.
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