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Yesterday the Urban Ministry Center and Temple Beth El launched www.solvethepuzzlecharlotte.org, a website designed to be a gateway for Charlotteans to act.

This site is for the everyday person who cares about our community, who wants to help end and prevent homelessness but doesn’t know how to get involved. Through this site, Charlotteans will be able to match their passion for the cause with an agency that is actively working toward our collective goal.

For years there have been agencies working to end and prevent homelessness in this community,” said Rabbi Judy Schindler of Temple Beth El. “These agencies have responded to the crisis of homelessness with expansion and collaboration:

  • The merger of the Uptown Men’s Shelter and the Emergency Winter Shelter under the banner of the Men’s Shelter to better address men’s homelessness
  • The expansion of McCreesh Place to house more disabled men who were previously homeless
  • The completion of 10 townhomes by the YWCA for their “Families Together” program.
  • The WISH merger with Charlotte Emergency Family Housing and Family Promise to create Charlotte Family Housing for homeless families.
  • The opening of Moore Place which provides apartments to 85 chronically homeless individuals.

These are great successes, but there is more work to be done. This is the time for concerted action by our community.”

According to Schindler, on a single night in 2011, more than 2,800 people were reported homeless in Charlotte-Mecklenburg, andthere is community need for more than 16,000 affordable housing rental units to prevent those at immediate risk from becoming homeless.

These statistics are startling and it is the reason Schindler says Temple Beth El and Urban Ministry Center come together to create this website, a place where people can come to learn more about how they can pick up a piece of the puzzle and become a part of the solution.

Website highlights:

  • The website homepage features four icons – the hand that represents prevention, the heart that represents services, the headshot for the people and the house for the homes that are needed.
  • These icons help visitors navigate the site and learn more about each area of the puzzle and how they can get involved.
  • Each area features organizations in this community that are working to end and prevent homelessness in Charlotte. You can learn more about the organization and about opportunities for you to support their efforts to end and prevent homelessness in Charlotte.

Check out the website by going to www.solvethepuzzlecharlotte.org.

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