I have worked with people who are homeless for almost my entire adult life. I started volunteering and found I was useful. I also found the way we deliver homeless services to teens and adults in the ngo and public spheres incredibly inefficient lacking. I have been working to change that from the bottom up ever since 2002.
The Urban Ministry Center, Charlotte, NC.
This is a small plot of land where soup is served to the homeless 365 days a year. I started building things there together with members of the homeless community. From murals, to community gardens, to street soccer pitches, arbors, and eventually a new facility, we inscribed every inch of the property with hearts and souls. Our ability to transform our immediate environment was the basic for the programs we developed. Now I have left, but other than the Shenandoah Valley where my family has lived for generation, this location feels the most like home to me. When I go back the ethos we developed is still palpable and though the people have changed an understanding and sense of mission remains. When I go back, the people I have worked with come back to visit and we connect to the best parts of ourselves that we discovered together there.
I want to see the end to homelessness as we know it in the United States. The problem is soluble, but the entrenched model of services prevents it.
I founded Community Works 945 for empowering the homeless in 2002. One of our program, inspired by the Homeless World Cup, is called Street Soccer USA. Street Soccer USA has been replicated in 18 cities across the country. In addition to being the CEO of Street Soccer USA, I now work at Director of Development and Advocacy for HELP USA, a national provider of permanent supportive housing for the homeless based in New York City.
O Programa Street Soccer EUA (SSUSA) acredita que acabar com o desabrigamento é um esporte em equipe. Trabalhamos com adolescentes e adultos em situação de rua dos 15 anos em diante, masculino e feminino, em 18 cidades dos Estados Unidos.. Inspirado na Homeless World Cup [Campeonato Mundial de Futebol Social], a Street Soccer USA. passou a se concentrar no desenvolvimento de um projeto de qualidade e comunitário que utiliza o esporte para o desenvolvimento de moradores de rua e desabrigados.
Através de uma abordagem sistêmica que:
SSUSA a la conviction qu´éradiquer la pauvreté est un sport d´équipe. Nous travaillons avec des adolescents et des adultes de 15 ans et plus sans-abri, hommes et femmes, dans 18 villes des Etats-Unis d´Amérique. Inspirés par la Coupe du monde pour sans-abri, Street Soccer USA continue la mise au point du développement d´un programme de qualité et un modèle du sport pour le développement avec les sans-abri basé sur la communauté.
A travers une approche méthodologique
Street Soccer USA cree que acabar con el problema de la falta de vivienda es un deporte de equipo. Trabajamos con adolescentes sin hogar de 15 años o más, de ambos sexos, en 18 ciudades de los Estados Unidos. Bajo la inspiración del Mundial de los Sin Techo, Street Soccer USA ha concentrado sus esfuerzos en alcanzar la excelencia en los programas de desarrollo y en lograr un modelo de deporte basado en la comunidad para el desarrollo con las personas sin techo.
A través de un enfoque sistemático, Street Soccer USA:
SSUSA believes ending homelessness is a team sport. We work with homeless teens and adults ages 15 and up, male and female, in 18 US cities. Inspired by the Homeless World Cup, Street Soccer USA has gone on to focus on developing programming excellence and a community based model for sport for development with the homeless.
Through a systematic approach we
1. Build community and trust through sports with participants and volunteers, transforming the context within which they live from one of isolation, abuse, and marginalization, to one of community, purpose, and achievement.