Stories

Submitted by Adam Gibbs on

Ruth, the mother of two adult children, has battled challenges throughout her life, including more than a decade of homelessness. She grew up in state care from the age of one until she was emancipated at 16. Over the past 10 years, she has struggled through frigid winters and bounced from place to place as she learned to survive on the streets in Rhode Island, one of four states participating in our Zero: 2016 initiative.

Submitted by Adam Gibbs on

This week, the Rockford/Boone/Winnebago continuum of care, a region of over 350,000 people in Northern Illinois, became the first community in the country to announce that it has achieved functional zero for veteran homelessness, a major accomplishment in the nationwide fight to end veteran homelessness.

Several other communities have already announced they have ended veteran homelessness. What makes this one is unique?

Submitted by Jake Maguire on

This week, Encore.org announced the 2015 Purpose Prize fellows, an inspiring group of people, all over the age of 60, who are using their middle and later lives to make a positive impact. We are thrilled to share the news that Linda Kaufman, national movement manager for our Zero: 2016 initiative, has been named one of this year's fellows.

"I am charged with being the movement’s public heart and voice," Linda wrote in her application. "As such, I stir the spirit and will of folks who have thought that ending homelessness is impossible. It is not."

Heart and voice, indeed.

Submitted by Adam Gibbs on

Wal-Mart may be the most recognized retailer in the world. In the U.S. alone, the company has over 4,000 stores, and over 90% of Americans have shopped at one at some point in their lives.

Another thing you may not know about Wal-Mart is that, at any moment in time, the company can account for every single piece of inventory sitting on any of its millions of shelves worldwide.

Submitted by Adam Gibbs on

Danny worked as a carpenter all of his adult life, until an accident injured his back and caused him to lose his right eye. As a result of his injury, he found it difficult to continue working and contractors stopped hiring him, citing the insurance risk.

Danny soon lost his home and began moving from couch to couch. He eventually ended up outside, living in the woods of southern Mississippi for six years. As Danny's health issues worsened, he lost most of his mobility and began to depend on others living in the encampment, where he "became part of the environment of the camp."

Submitted by Adam Gibbs on

We talk a lot about data here at Community Solutions, and with good reason -- we firmly believe that you can’t solve a problem that you can’t properly dimension. That's why Zero: 2016 communities across the country have set clear measurable goals, known as Take Down Targets, to measure progress and optimize resources as they work toward an end to chronic and veteran homelessness.

Submitted by Adam Gibbs on

James, a U.S. Army veteran, first became homeless when he was 9 years old. In 1986, after being discharged from the Army, he immediately fell into homelessness again and has constantly grappled with it in the 29 years since, most recently in the Zero: 2016 community of Jacksonville, Florida. Adding to his struggles, James faced substance abuse issues while homeless and copes with mental illness and PTSD.

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