From the Executive Director

The famous Chinese curse, "May you live in interesting times," seems to have arrived with a vengeance. All around us we see Seattle's extraordinary economic boom. Construction cranes and traffic abound and housing prices are soaring. At the same time our neighbors at the low end are being squeezed and are struggling. Consider this remarkable statistic: in the last year the number of seniors who came to us for assistance increased by 45%. Forty-five percent! Many seniors live on a fixed income that is simply not keeping up with cost of living increases. With medical issues a big concern for this age group, it is shocking that so many elders living in our neighborhoods are finding themselves in such desperate situations.

We're also hearing more and more from hard-working families and individuals, longtime neighborhood residents, whose rents are rising faster than they can keep up with. Or people like Jeffrey, a recent veteran, who came to us for help with housing because of a delay with his VA assistance. Or the mom whose son was diagnosed with a rare cancer and chose to stay by his bedside, forced to choose between comforting her son and receiving a paycheck. There are so many others, but you get the idea. These are our neighbors. You won't notice them as you pass on the street because the only difference between them and us is they don't have a safety net when an emergency or personal crisis hits.

This is the reason the Queen Anne Helpline exists, and why your support continues to be crucial. We don't receive government grants -- it is your support that makes our work possible. That's why I am asking you to continue your support and join your neighbors and friends by attending our Taste of Queen Anne fundraiser on October 10th. This fun (and delicious) evening is a perfect way to do good while having a good time. Please don't delay getting your tickets (individual or a table for 8). We expect about 300 guests; last year we sold out so we are expanding capacity this year. We'll have fabulous fare from top local restaurants, live jazz from Tim Kennedy trio, a hosted wine and beer bar, and our legendary Golden Raffle, with more amazing prizes than ever. What's more, it's all happening right on top of Queen Anne at St. Anne Church Banchero Hall. Buy tickets online on our website -- -- or just call us at 206-292-1540. Ticket prices increase from $100 to $125/person after Sept. 12th, so don't delay. We can't wait to see you and your friends on Oct. 10th! 
Lisa Moore, Executive Director

2015-16 Weekend Food for Kids Program
Fifty-five children in Queen Anne and Magnolia meet the federal criteria to be recognized as "homeless." This number represents just the kids who are enrolled in a public school in these neighborhoods and whose parents officially filled out the form that establishes that designation. Many, many more children in this area qualify for the federal Free and Reduced Lunch program at their schools.
What exactly does this mean? It means there are a lot of children in Queen Anne and Magnolia whose families' incomes fall well below the poverty line, which often leads to hunger. And hunger has a huge impact on behavior and performance in the school classroom. An article in the Journal of School Health, by Dr. Howard Taras, cites studies that determined " insufficiency was associated with significantly poorer cognitive functioning, decreased school attendance, or diminished academic achievement."    
Fortunately these kids can receive free breakfast and lunch at their school - but what happens on the weekends? All of the other costs of living (rent, utilities, transportation, medical) stretch family budgets to extremes, often leaving parents faced with choosing between food and some other necessity like keeping the lights on.
Just over two years ago, Queen Anne Helpline started discussing this problem with Queen Anne Presbyterian Church and Ballard Food Bank, which resulted in the Weekend Food for Kids program. This community partnership ensures that any student in our zip code service area will not go hungry over the weekends by providing them a bag of food each Friday to take home after school. Each bag contains the equivalent of seven nutritious meals and snacks.
During the 2014-15 school year we worked with four schools to provide weekend food bags for 49 children. We recognize we are not reaching every student who could benefit from this service -- maintaining confidentiality at the schools can be challenging; we don't want to draw attention to the students who are taking home a bag of food each Friday, yet we need to accurately (and discreetly) identify students.
But we are determined to rise to the challenge! As the new school year begins, we are reaching out to all schools in our service area to ensure that their most vulnerable students are well-fed -- and thus able to perform at their full potential.

Volunteer Spotlight - Susan Brown

Susie has been volunteering for the Helpline for the past year and a half, primarily assisting with the newsletter and other communication projects as well as assisting clients as a front desk volunteer. A Queen Anne resident for nine years, Susie wanted to get involved with a local organization to give back to the community and help her son (now 6) think about ways to do the same. She hopes to get him started on a food or clothing drive soon!

"I am so impressed with the work the Helpline does," she says. "The staff and the volunteers are incredibly dedicated
, and they are truly making a difference to our neighbors in need. It's sobering to realize how many individuals and families around us are facing financial difficulty at any given time, but also uplifting to see the generosity of the Helpline supporters and to know that even small donations are making a huge difference in our clients' lives by preventing evictions, utility shutoffs, and other crisis situations."


Susie's writing and editing skills  - not to mention her willingness to train new volunteers on data entry tasks - have been invaluable, enabling us to more efficiently serve our clients. Thanks Susie!

Recent Client Story
We received a card from a client recently: "Dear Queen Anne Helpline, Your assistance with my rent means so much to me. My life took quite an unexpected turn lately and my Irish luck seems to be on hiatus. Thank you for your kindness and generosity."
All of us, at some point, feel like our luck -- be it Irish or otherwise -- may be "on hiatus." This particular client had been laid off from her job many months ago, and had been living off of her savings while she struggled to find a new job; unemployment benefits were just not stretching far enough. So the Helpline paid for a month's rent to help ease her stress as she was preparing for some interviews. We'd like to think we stepped in as this client's lucky four leaf clover!
The Queen Anne Helpline is so grateful for our active community
of volunteers, donors and participants!

Each of you gives us the support we need to do the work we do every day.

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