We are happy to bring you our newest interview with an outstanding organization fighting homelessness – Gateway Center based in Atlanta, GA. We spoke with Bec Cranford, Director of Community Engagement & Volunteer Services who shared with us her sincere thoughts on the biggest challenges NGO has met during the past years, about its biggest accomplishments and much more!
“I love connecting the community to meaningful engagement with those experiencing homelessness that results in dignity, uplift, and life change.”, Bec says. This sentence should sparkle you up to read the whole interview! What are you waiting for? Get busy and find out why this organization is so special!
Support Gateway Center at http://www.gatewayctr.org/ and follow them on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram! Enjoy the reading!
1. To begin with, can you briefly introduce your organization and what is your organization’s main mission?
Gateway Center works to end homelessness, and particularly chronic homelessness, by providing the support and framework people need to achieve self-sufficiency. Through therapeutic programs and services, Gateway helps homeless individuals in metro Atlanta move into transitional and permanent housing.
2. In which ways have you contributed to the local community?
We provide basic services including showers, hygiene items, emergency clothing, housing assessments, and residential programs for those experiencing homelessness in Atlanta, as well as referrals, and connections to other services.
3. What was the biggest challenge your organization had to face?
We lost a lot of funding in 2013- over $650,000. Instead of closing our doors, we made a bigger commitment to provide services to those experiencing homelessness. We rallied in the community and talked to our corporate sponsors. As of now, we are able to provide services to those who are chronically homeless, seven days per week from 7 am- 5 pm, and then we reopen daily from 7pm-9pm for showers for men. In addition, we have over 500 residents in two facilities who are transitioning from homelessness.
4. What do you perceive to be your biggest accomplishment?
One of our biggest accomplishments is our veterans program. Roughly 60% of our veteran population leave Gateway Center with income and housing.
5. How would you like the members of the local community to get involved with your organization?
We always need committed individual volunteers, Monday-Friday from 9-5, Donations of socks and underwear, and groups to provide meals onsite. Additionally, we are always seeking new partnerships and donors.
6. Do you have any upcoming events?
On April 28th, We will have our Drink Beer, Do Good Friend Raiser at Max Lager’s in Downtown Atlanta. http://www.gatewayctr.org/Events-Details/drink-beer-do-good-2018/
And keep in mind that we will have a signature fundraiser called Human Clay in November.
7. What is it that you love most about what you do?
I love connecting the community to meaningful engagement with those experiencing homelessness that results in dignity, uplift, and life change.