HOME Center gives and receives

By Brittany Anderson

COUNTY OF HAYS — A problem as complex as housing insecurity cannot be solved alone, but a local non-profit organization and many community members are working together to find solutions.

HOME (Homeless Outreach Mitigation Emergency) Center of Central Texas is a nonprofit coalition based in San Marcos and serves all of Hays County, helping homeless people find reliable housing, along with a myriad of other services .

Hannah Durrance is the founder and director of HOME Center. Her mission to end housing insecurity after her own experiences helped expand the center into a 501(c)(3) nonprofit coalition that partners with emergency rental assistance programs of the county and works one-on-one with people to provide resources that match their individual needs.

One of the main components of the center is to provide individuals and families with temporary housing in motel rooms. Durrance said the need for it has increased dramatically over the past two years. Before, they only housed about one or two families in motels per month. Currently, more than 60 households are staying in motels and 39 have moved into accommodation in the past eight months.

In addition to offering motel placement, HOME Center provides transportation to appointments and community services, job search and resume building assistance, hygiene bags, clothing and other needed items received through donations; and case managers who help clients through the process of applying for houses, apartments, Social Security, food stamps and more.

Recently, some community members gave back to HOME Center.

Photo courtesy of Yasheda Sullivan
Commissioner Mark Jones, center, presented a check for $10,000 to HOME Center. Center staff and case managers accepted the check alongside founder and director Hannah Durrance, second from right, and First Baptist Church NBC outreach program director Yasheda Sullivan, far right.

Hays County Pct. Commissioner Mark Jones presented the center with a check for $10,000 for discretionary funds, which Durrance said went to fund some salaries, pay for shelter, gas for people trying to get to work and resources to apply for apartments.

Additionally, Yasheda Sullivan, outreach director at First Baptist Church NBC, donated backpacks with school supplies and COVID-19 test kits, which Durrance said went to children going through the centre, many of whom leave situations of domestic violence and do not have time to bring all their necessary items.

“As an outreach director at my church, I could not effectively assist my clients without the partnership of community agencies like HOME Center and the services they provide,” Sullivan said. “So we work together to serve the most vulnerable and marginalized community and population in the city of San Marcos.”

For those interested in helping the center, Durrance said they are open to people who are familiar with data entry, have grant writing experience or could help organize and distribute donations, transport clients to appointments. help clients with applications and, of course, all fundraising opportunities.

People needing help from HOME Center, visit www.homecentertx.org/how-to-receive-services to learn more.

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