For today's podcast Marguerite sat down with Rob Mcnairhuff of MDC to have a conversation about homelessness in Tacoma. MDC is a local nonprofit that has helped Tacoma and Pierce County with housing, health care, education, and employment since 1964.
Awareness of people experiencing homelessness in Tacoma is on the rise, and conversations about the right way to tackle this challenge in our city are happening. Conversations are happening all over town hosted by many different organizations.
"It's important I think as a community to realize though, that collectively we can make and impact and make a difference for these people," says Rob. "And that we know from the 50+ years that MDC has been in Tacoma that a lot of lives have been touched and improved."
Organizations in Tacoma are beginning to adopt the Housing First model pioneered in Utah with the opening of the Randall Townsend Apartments. There's a national initiative to end homelessness among veterans. But what else? What can the average Tacoman do to help? "In Tacoma it's a largish city but it's a really small town. By showing up, by caring, by talking about issues we can actually make a difference, and make a positive change for people. And maybe I'm an optimist but we can instill a lot of hope in this town still."
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The MDC Share Breakfast Rob speaks about in the interview is Tuesday September 29th, 2015. The event will feature a celebration of local success stories from MDC clients and a keynote address from John Quiñones, who rose from poverty in a family that worked as migrant farm workers to go to college and create a career in journalism – now as the host of the TV show, “What Would You Do?” Learn more here.
New Tacoma Homeless Encampment Forum The New Tacoma Neighborhood Council is sponsoring a forum on homeless encampments featuring a panel of local community experts and social service program providers to engage with community to discuss opportunities and efforts to help develop effective outcomes for the New Tacoma Neighborhood.