Kevin + Keys = Great News!

“I won’t have to worry about watching my clothes, watching my medication; to make sure my medication isn’t getting stolen.” That was Kevin’s number one relief in receiving housing—having a safe place for his medication. In fact, stolen meds led to Kevin’s elevated blood pressure and eventually a spinal stroke, heart attack, and a wheel-chair. All while receiving dialysis three …

GCAA Brings the Wellness

You can see from the smiles that October’s Wellness Challenge Picnic is a much anticipated event for many Moore Place tenants! From June to September, tenants collect badges by participating in one of the 7-8 wellness opportunities offered each week—art, yoga, cooking, walking, etc. Collect four badges for the month and they are invited to a Wellness Reception with a …

ArtWorks 945 Hosts Google Execs

We seldom receive phone calls from London here at the Urban Ministry Center, but that’s what happened one day a few weeks ago.   She said her name was Sayo Ayodele and she was with Leaders’ Quest, an international leadership development organization based in London, New York and Singapore.  She said she had been reading about us and wanted to visit …

Making Moving Day Meaningful

For many families, this past weekend marked “moving in” day for their college students.  My family spent a steamy Saturday afternoon hauling items up many flights of stairs (and on the elevator when we could get it!) into my daughter’s new dorm room.  Throughout the move, I kept saying to myself, “Wow, where is she going to put all of …

Give Need a Vacation with Summer Share

While the winter holidays bring enough donations to overflow the shelves, the summer months can be challenging. The weather is better, people are focused on taking a break from work or school and leaving town on vacations. Share Charlotte recognized this challenge faced by nonprofits and created SummerShare to help promote the idea of giving NEED a vacation. July 10-21 …

#HowIGive: Jerry Levine, Front Desk Volunteer

Volunteer Jerry Levine says working at the front desk of Urban Ministry Center for the past 3+ years makes him feel lighter and being here helps him tap into himself in a unique way. He cares more, is humbled, and believes it helps him regain perspective about what truly hurts him and what he’s grateful for in his own day …

The Voices of Room in the Inn

Urban Ministry Center’s Room in the Inn program is entering its final month of the season. The Room in the Inn (RITI) program began in 1996 with a goal of providing a warm, safe, and dry place for Mecklenburg County’s homeless population during Charlotte’s coldest months – December through March. Over 130 area churches and colleges throughout the Charlotte area …

HousingFest and Stories of Housing

As a VISTA Volunteer, I work on events for the development team at the Urban Ministry Center, and I am usually tucked away in an office with spreadsheets and press releases. But every morning during check in, I get the chance to be with our neighbors, and to be reminded of the purpose of all the fundraising we do in …

Point in Time Count Offers Opportunity to Engage

I saw him sitting on the stairs of the Epicenter, uncontrollably shaking and holding a cup out for money. I had never seen him before. As my Point in Time count team approached, he barely glanced up. “Good morning, my name is Allison and I work for Urban Ministry Center’s outreach team. We’re out checking on people who may have …

Eagle Scout Improvements at Urban Ministry Center

As summer officially comes to a close this week, we wanted to recognize a few scouts who made 2016 the summer of campus improvements at 945 N College Street! Troop 16 at First Presbyterian Church has become very familiar with Urban Ministry Center as three scouts, Michael Quartapella, Nick Quartapella, and Rich Pope each completed their Eagle Scout Projects with …

Special Year for Homeless World Cup

Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of coaching the Street Soccer U.S.A. national team at the Homeless World Cup in Glasgow, Scotland.  It is always an amazing experience being at the Homeless World Cup, but this year was a little more special.  For the first time, the U.S.A. team was able to implement a curriculum called the B.A.L.L program.  …

Neighbor To Neighbor Program: Moving Beyond Housing Retention

What do people need most when they settle into housing after experiencing long periods of homelessness? For someone utilizing services at the Urban Ministry Center main campus, those needs can often be easier to identify. They need a hot lunch, an ID, a shower. For an individual moving off the streets and into permanent housing, those needs can be harder …

Unexpectedly Blessed by Those Yet to be Housed

In the midst of frantically applying for graduate schools and jobs following my graduation from college, I stumbled upon Urban Ministry Center’s website. I figured since I was new to Charlotte, I could get to know the community by volunteering. However, I never expected to begin my post graduate career here- and I never expected it to change my life. …

HousingWorks Tenants Recognized for Volunteering

Some time ago, Moore Place tenant Kenneth Dill began volunteering at Second Harvest Food Bank.  What began as a notion to volunteer a couple of days each week developed into so much more.   From the start, Kenny recognized the significant impact Second Harvest was having within Charlotte and beyond.  “There’s over 900 agencies in North and South Carolina that we …

HousingFest: Concert to End Homelessness

As a social worker and a musician, HousingFest blends my passions perfectly. I’m excited to share our plans for this year’s event. What’s HousingFest? HousingFest is a music festival dedicated to ending homelessness in Charlotte. It’s guided by two simple principles: 1) Housing is a basic human right and 2) music has the power to unite people to end homelessness. …

Blessed by a Neighbor

Carmel Presbyterian Church is one of many houses of faith that provides shelter and fellowship for our neighbors during Room In The Inn. This article is from “The Carmel Letter,” and reprinted with Ed’s permission. The recent Room In The Inn session on January 18 was a real blessing for me. Boy Scout Troop #79 prepared and served a very …

Layers of Awareness

Last month, our community completed the annual Point in Time Count Survey. Over 150 volunteers spread out across the community to conduct a survey with people who spent the night outside. Tricia Sistrunk was one of those volunteers. This was her second year volunteering. She also serves as a regular volunteer with the outreach team. On the morning of the survey, I …

Creating Community in Memory of Al Gorman

If you want to know what community looks like, you only had to stop by Chick-Fil-A at Davis Lake on October 10.  There were dozens of families gathered to enjoy a vanilla iced coffee and to remember the life and death of a shared friend: Al Gorman.  Al lived homeless in the Huntersville community for seven years.  Tucked away a …

Morgan Ferone: Young Woman of Distinction in our Eyes Too

We met Morgan Ferone in June when she began her two month internship as a Covenant Presbyterian People in Mission Scholar. She jumped in right away, learning every volunteer job possible and training to be a facilitator for our Walk in My Shoes education program. Morgan was always on the move and when she wasn’t needed in the showers, laundry, …

Finding the Key

Urban Ministry Center is leading an effort to end chronic homelessness in Charlotte. Hear from the UMC staff and community making it happen, and witness the successes of the housing first strategy. This video was originally shared at the True Blessings Luncheon held November 17, 2015.