Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Everyone is welcome here . Those simple, powerful words have been at the heart of the Helpline's mission since we started assisting our neighbors in need 35 years ago. But today those words have a profound new urgency.

We are in unprecedented times. There is so much uncertainty and fear about the future. While we don't receive any federal funding, we are very concerned about the impact future policy changes may have for many of our clients and are making sure we stay engaged and informed about any changes. We are also affirming our commitment to serve everyone -- regardless of their background, legal status, or beliefs -- with respect and dignity. One response to this uncertainty is the number of people who are stepping up and looking for ways to get involved. I am so amazed and heartened by how many people are contacting us daily asking how they can support our work. "I feel like I have to do something and my community is where I want to focus my efforts" is typical of what people are saying. We have seen a significant jump in volunteer applications from all kinds of people who bring a wealth and breadth of experience and skills. From retired seniors (see Sheila's volunteer profile, below) to energetic millennials, we always strive to find meaningful ways for people to participate, taking advantage of their skills and interests to make a difference.

One of our more important and interesting volunteer positions is serving on our Board. Our Board of Directors are smart, dedicated, and tireless. I am grateful every day for their commitment, hard work, and trust. They help with the strategic direction of the Helpline, oversee our financial well-being, and assist with everything from communications to fundraising. Our board members are an impressive cross-section of our community, from realtors to CFO's and everyone in between; you can see a full list on our website. We are currently looking for 2-3 new Board members. Serving is a great way to give back to your community. We specifically need people with experience in fundraising or event planning, and strong community connections. If you or someone you know might be interested, please feel free to contact me directly at lisa@queenannehelpline.org. I am happy to discuss this opportunity in more detail.

Thanks for the difference you are making.
 
Warmly,  
Lisa
Lisa Moore, Executive Director
   
Case Management Helps Client Continue a Fulfilling Music Career

John was recently diagnosed with severe vision loss which has impaired his ability to work as a musician. After seeking financial assistance from the Helpline he was referred to our case management program for help completing his Social Security paperwork, but also voiced a desire to continue his fulfilling work as a musician. Liz helped him apply for a reduced fare bus pass, which has enabled him to travel to more performances and teaching opportunities. We also referred him to the State Department of the Blind which has provided him with multiple adaptive devices, free of charge, including software to help him read a computer screen, a talking watch, and even a device to help him use his oven safely. Now that John is able to use a computer again, our case management intern, Notae, has worked with him to help update his business Facebook page. Most recently, Liz assisted him with completion of a grant application, which, if approved, could provide up to $10,000 in resources for John to expand his teaching for students who do not have access to the arts. John feels energized and excited about his future and his ability to continue supporting himself through his passion for music.
Board Member Profile -- Rene Stern   
 
Rene moved to Queen Anne from Los Angeles in 1994 and says she felt a sense of community almost instantaneously -- something she had never felt in a neighborhood before. After working in the cruise ship industry for 12 years, Rene has been a Realtor with Windermere Real Estate on Queen Anne since 1998 and finds working with buyers and sellers an emotionally gratifying experience, particularly because it brings so many wonderful people into her life.

In her first year on Queen Anne Rene helped organize the Annual Bigelow Block sale (now in its 23rd year) which benefits the Helpline, and she has been spearheading it ever since, as well as bringing personal donations to the Helpline. As a Realtor, she regularly sponsors a table for her clients at the Taste of Queen Anne and has helped secure donations from the Windermere Foundation to the Helpline.
 





Rene says, "As I enter my second year as a Board member, I'm getting a much better picture of the needs our community has and how donations of time and money by everyone can make a huge impact on these needs.  It's been a very rewarding experience working with like-minded people who are focused on making our neighborhood more aware of resources available to them in hopes of making their lives a bit easier and to ultimately keep them off the streets."
 
 

Volunteer Spotlight:  Sheila Morrison
 

 
Sheila received her MSW from the University of Washington in 1978. In her 30-plus years in social work, her focus was always on programs and services for the most vulnerable in our society -- low-income people of color, women, and children; the homeless; and elders. She has sought to continue that focus through volunteer work in her retirement.
 
Sheila has been working on a critical database project for the Helpline, ensuring that we have complete and accurate data for reports, grant proposals, and other projects. She says, "Living in Magnolia, I have observed the work of the Queen Anne Helpline which serves my neighborhood and is a vital resource for vulnerable individuals in the community. While reviewing client information, I am able to see proof that the Helpline serves vulnerable members of the community who often, through no fault of their own, find themselves in very difficult financial situations. By working on this database project, I can join with the Helpline to continue my focus of working to support individuals in need in our community."

While it's not the most glamorous job, Sheila is providing a much needed service in helping us keep our client files accurate and up to date. Her attention to detail and positivity are so appreciated. We look forward to her visits every week!

Client Story

Neighbors helping neighbors . . . helping neighbors!
 
Recently a single mom living in nearby subsidized housing contacted us because she simply could not pay her rent. She had been extremely stressed worrying how she was going to pay all her bills when she mentioned her worries to a friend who referred her to us. She had no idea we were here and that such an organization could help pay rent during a temporary time of hardship! She was greatly relieved indeed.
 
When she came in to her appointment, we discovered that a few short years ago, she and her child had been living in a shelter. She finally made it into subsidized housing, at which time she realized she had a valuable skill that could help her earn an income; she can speak eight languages! Many of these languages are African (she is from Eritrea), and she is now working at Mary's Place as a translator assisting immigrant families.
 
So, in this instance, we are helping someone in need who in turn is helping many folks in need - it comes full circle!

HELPLINE WISH LIST

Clothing Bank - Men and Women
  • Men's casual pants - Dockers, jeans, khakis
  • Backpacks, small suitcases, duffel bags
Food Pantry 
  • Mac and cheese
  • Canned soup
  • Canned tuna
  • Pasta and sauce
  • Juice boxes
Hygiene Bar
  • Men's shaving products
  • Deodorant
  • Toilet paper

Now you can easily donate items by checking out our Amazon Wish List and ordering there. When you order, please consider using Amazon Smile with Queen Anne Helpline as your designated charity: Amazon Smile.  

THANK YOU!
  
Heartfelt thanks to the following groups or individuals for their fantastic support!
 
KCTS 9 and everyone who donated to their fantastic Mr. Rogers Sweater Drive. As one of three local agencies who received these warm clothing donations, we couldn't be more grateful. You are helping so many people stay warm and dry -- thank you!

Girl Scout Troop 42770 and all the volunteers who participate every week in our Weekend Food for Kids packing parties to help prepare bags of food for local kids. A big shout out as well to the volunteer drivers who pick up the food from Ballard Food Bank and deliver it to the schools every week!

Magnolia Presbyterian Church for hosting us at a recent service and then collecting donations on our behalf. Your compassion and caring for neighbors in need are so appreciated!

Pamela Larison who recently ordered some much needed food items from Amazon and had them delivered to our door. She has inspired us to set up an Amazon Wish List as well - see our wish list, above. Thanks Pamela!

Greg Smith
, our handy neighbor, for making time in his busy schedule to come and hang new clothing racks and our old building sign.

Ward Johnson Winery who over the holidays collected clothing and food on our behalf PLUS provided a nice financial gift. A thoughtful and wonderful effort, thanks so much!

Ballard DECA and student Sophie Goddard for collecting and delivering much-needed hygiene items. Sophie learned about us when her McClure class visited last year; she was impressed with what she learned and decided she wanted to give back to her community. You rock Sophie!

Bartell Drugs for donating 2,000 bags to our Weekend Food for Kids program!

St. Clement's Epispocal Church who, at the suggestion of volunteer Rick Tanner, collected can openers for us to distribute to folks who don't have access to kitchen tools. Thirty-six and more coming. These are so much appreciated -- and it just goes to show it doesn't take much to make a big difference!

 

Our mission: To improve the lives of our neighbors by providing emergency assistance for housing, food
and basic needs.

Queen Anne Helpline is so grateful for all of our volunteers, donors and supporters - you make our work possible and help improve the lives of our most vulnerable neighbors. 
 
Please consider making a donation to help support  local families, seniors, and individuals. You can donate here
or visit our website:

Queen Anne Helpline
311 West McGraw
Seattle, WA  98119
206-282-1540