An Urban Plunge
Feb 29, 2016
Recently, Community Support Services hosted several students from Walsh Jesuit Catholic High School to provide an overview of homelessness in Summit County. This learning opportunity is part of the schools program, Labre. The program is named after Saint Benedict Joseph Labre, the patron saint of the homeless. According to the program's organizer, Lauren Fraser, the students embarked on an "Urban Plunge" aimed to help the students understand the realities of homelessness in the greater Akron area while having a increased apprecition of the depth of food insecurity and a greater awareness of the cycle of poverty.
As part of the study, the students met with Tim Edgar, Housing Manager, and Patricia Symons, Homeless Outreach Supervisor, for an overview of homeless in the community as well as the impact of mental illness on homelessness. On a weekly basis, the students from Walsh visit the homeless in the community to offer food and friendship. Ms. Symons will be joining the students in an effort to connect persons in need of mental health and other social services with the agency. The introduction of the students to the agency's Homeless Outreach team has opened another door as the students from Walsh Jesuit are working with the staff of Homeless Outreach to determine ongoing opportunities to support the homeless in our community.