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Meeting a need

Scripture calls the church to give a voice to the voiceless, to meet the needs of those pushed to the margins. In Spring of 2020 we continued to answer this call by moving microshelters onto our property. These shelters provide transitional housing to those experiencing houselessness in Benton County.

The power of safe shelter

The move from living outdoors to living in a microshelter provides much needed safety and security. The individual no longer has to worry about their belongings being stolen if they have to run an errand. They no longer have to worry about being woken up in the night and asked to pack up their belongings and move along. The extreme stress of living outdoors is slowly lifted and they can begin to process what it looks like to move toward health and stability.

Out of the shadows

Our houseless brothers and sisters are continually pushed to the margins where it is easy to treat them as less than human. Microshelters welcome them out of the shadows and into community. A consistent and safe housing location also increases an individuals' access to services. As microshelter participants develop a personal plan, regular contact from service providers is paramount. These interactions with service providers assist individuals in their move toward health and stability.

Who is Unity Shelter?

Hosting a microshelter ministry is a large undertaking and CEC simply wouldn't be able to manage the process alone. Our partnership with Unity Shelter provides the resources needed to make this ministry successful. Unity Shelter exists to provide safe shelter through collaborative care.

Unity Shelter Provides:

  • The Shelters

    • The shelters are 8’x15’ with a 3’ porch.

    • Shelters are built and installed by local contractors.

  • Program intake

    • Background checks

    • Interview process

  • Case management

    • Each participant has a case manager that helps them create an individualized care plan and works with them to achieve any goals that are set

  • Code of conduct expectations

    • Program participants sign a code of conduct and are expected to adhere to these guidelines.

  • Site Supervision

    • A site supervisor regularly visits host sites and each microshelter.

    • Case managers make weekly contact with the participants.

For more information about Unity Shelter visit

www.unityshelter.org

Permits

Microshelter sites must obtain a permit from the city. Each approved permit is valid for 1 year and allows hosts to place up to 4 shelters on site. CEC is currently hosting 3 shelters. To view the city's permit application click here.

Provisions

Unity Shelter asks host sites to provide program participants the following:

- Electricity for each shelter

- Access to clean drinking water

- Access to garbage disposal

- Bathroom facilities (porta-potty)

Oversite

Program participants are vetted via an intake process performed by Unity Shelter.  Each participant also signs a code of conduct before being placed at a shelter site. The Unity Shelter Site Manager visits each host site weekly to do a general check-in and monitor adherence to the code of conduct. 

Connections

CEC is committed to building personal relationships with program participants. Each week members of our Microshelter Team touch base with the individuals in the microshelters and see how they are doing. Program participants also meet weekly with their case manager.

Placement

Over the years the Northeast corner of our parking-lot has been regularly used for illegal activity (Drug use, drug deals, illegal dumping). We believe hosting the shelters in this area of our parking-lot will redeem this space. This particular space also offers participants privacy, safety from regular traffic use , and the ability to engage with the larger community if they so choose. 

Communication

We understand that the information on this page isn't exhaustive. As such, you may have questions, concerns or would just desire more information. If you'd like to get in touch you can connect with any/all of the following individuals.

Garrett Beatty - Associate Pastor - Corvallis Evangelical Church

Shawn Collins - Executive Director - Unity Shelter

Harry Reich - Site Manager - Unity Shelter

CEC Microshelter Specifics

© 2019 Corvallis Evangelical Church  1525 NW Kings Blvd. Corvallis, OR  97330