Weekly e-Newsletter | May 3rd, 2023

Reflections from Amy Schwabenlender, CEO

Sporadic reflections from the front lines serving single adults experiencing homelessness, with more hours per day of sunshine, Phoenix summer on the horizon, and swirling community conversations. It's been 11 days since my last post. Since we are in endemic mode related to COVID, I'll pause my personal olfactory updates and only share if I gain some tremendous new level of smelling abilities (note: nothing new in the last 11 days).

After about six weeks of counting more than 800 individuals as unsheltered in the neighborhood around the Human Services Campus, the count today by the HSC Outreach Team is 762. We don't know where over 100 people went exactly in the last week. We do know that news from the City about cleanup activities is causing people to have concerns, questions, and potentially leading them to leave the area.

We continue to shelter about 900 people per night in four spaces on the Campus. And as summer temperatures have already arrived, we are setting up for heat relief. More shaded areas outdoors, more hours indoors for people have a place of respite. And the impending demand for approximately 100,000 bottles of water per month. The collective Thirst Aid effort launches this week with an ask to the community to donate bottles of water, hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, and lip balm. It's the time of year when I'm reminded that the effects of heat are not as recognized as cold weather effects. Having spent my younger years in Wisconsin, freeze warnings are seemingly more easily understood by people. We all can visualize freezing (we all know what an ice cube looks like and how it's made), and we know it doesn't take long to suffer from frostbite or hypothermia. A heat warning doesn't seem to create the same visual... maybe we have personally experienced heat exhaustion or heat stroke... and maybe we all haven't. Yet heat can create a stress on the body that may lead to serious and potentially fatal conditions. For us Phoenicians, hydration and shade are life saving measures.

In other local news...[Read More]

ThirstAid Water Donation Drop-off

Campaign Starts this Saturday, May 6th

While water is needed year around, even more is needed over the summer. HSC and Campus partners will distribute at least 100,000 bottles of water per month from May through September to help clients stay hydrated and healthy.

The first bottled water donation drop-off of the season is this Saturday, May 6th from 9 am to noon. We make it easy: You pull up at 15th Avenue & Harrison Street, and our staff will remove the donations from your vehicle. We also welcome travel-sized toiletries, summer clothing, shoes, new men's/women's underwear, hats, sunglasses, sunscreen and lip balm. For more information or to schedule a drop-off on a different day, please email volunteer@hsc-az.org or call us at 602-282-0849. 

And we are grateful for Campus partner St. Joseph the Worker, the originator of ThirstAid who is co-hosting the May 6th launch with HSC. St. Joseph the Worker is a role model for promoting collaboration among Campus partners.

Donate Now

750 Veterans Served at StandDown Event

On April 28th, HSC worked with Arizona Housing Coalition and Valley of the Sun United Way to coordinate over 250 volunteers for the Maricopa County Veterans StandDown. This event allows veterans and their families who are experiencing housing instability and homelessness to receive and stay connected to supportive services. About 750 veterans were served by over 100 service providers, ranging from governmental entities to pet care (even chickens!). There was live music, art, haircuts, and great food. Volunteers were able to learn about the needs of veterans in our community, and veterans were surrounded with compassionate assistance that will provide lasting impact.

Project Connect Volunteers Needed on May 25th

The McQuaid Mission

on the


Season 2, Episode 7 of "It Happens at STN"

The April episode takes a look at utilizing the specific strengths of organizations dedicated to solving systemic issues in the Valley, how a credit union is helping nonprofits survive and what motivates leaders to lead. Watch it here.

Episode 8 will be taped on May 4th. Stay tuned!

Click Here to View All Episodes.

Mission:  Using the power of collaboration to create solutions to end homelessness
Human Services Campus | 204 S. 12th Avenue Phoenix, AZ 85007 | 602.282.0853 | www.hsc-az.org
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