Provide beds for 300 kids sleeping on the floor

by Community Warehouse
Vetted
From our goofy faces to you, the staff say THANKS!
From our goofy faces to you, the staff say THANKS!

Dear Friends,

Did you know that Community Warehouse turned 15 years old this June?

In the past fifteen years, the Warehouse has redistributed far more than chairs, beds, and can openers. Furniture is our currency, but what we really provide is health, happiness, and housing stability for thousands of neighbors in need annually.

Community Warehouse impacts a breadth of important issues, including:

  1. Social cohesion: client families feel cared about and supported by the community
  2. Sleep: we are the only agency in the region redistributing beds
  3. Food security: we provide kitchenware so families can cook healthy meals
  4. Housing retention: families are more likely to remain in furnished homes
  5. Financial prosperity: once we stabilize a family in their home, they can focus their resources on education, food, employment, or rehabilitation

It is truly a community effort. In the past 5 years alone, you have helped us bring stability, dignity, and hope to 37,000 people.

Here is one small story of a family who accessed the Warehouse this spring (narrated by Client Services Coordinator Vicky):

“A young mother who lost everything when she fled a domestic violence situation came in with her father. When he walked into the Warehouse, he was visibly taken aback. Before me stood a big burly man moved to tears over what his daughter was about to receive.

As we loaded a gorgeous kitchen table, a comfy couch and love seat (very heavy!), bunk beds for the kids, a recliner for mom, and boxes full of kitchen stuff and bedding, he repeatedly uttered ‘I just can't believe something like this exists.’ He gave out bear hugs, high fives and so many thank yous.

This is what dignity looks like. This is what we do.”

Your support makes a difference at the Warehouse, every day, in big and little ways. Together, we are providing comfort and stability to those who are in most need of it.

With sincere appreciation,

Anna

Happy kid helping pack his family
Happy kid helping pack his family's furniture

A week or so back, I was in the midst of a report when I heard giggles floating through my office door. I had to investigate. I had barely stepped onto the Warehouse floor when this little fellow appeared and promptly stuck out his hand to introduce himself: "Hello!" 

I smiled big - so mature! We were soon moving about the Warehouse while he helped carry the smaller goods that his family had selected to their truck. He was quite the gymnast, and was very proud of his ability to do the splits. Whenever we came across a clear spot on the floor, there was a mini performance – he would drop to the floor with great enthusiasm, then bounce right back up. Oh, to be five again! 

When I returned to my office, I was still smiling. I glanced down at the last image I took on my phone: the young boy was walking confidently toward a full truck, his new chair in tow. 

I felt warmth well in my heart at the significance of this small window of joy and hope....a window that may extend into the rest of his life.

Our services positively impact food security, housing security, physical and mental health, family health, educational achievement, and much more. Thank you for helping support basic needs for families and individuals in our community.

Warmly,
Rena

A veteran picking out his new bed
A veteran picking out his new bed

Dear Friends,

In 2015, Community Warehouse took major strides by partnering with the Portland Mayor’s Office and multiple key partners for the Home For Every Veteran initiative with a goal to house every homeless veteran in Portland by 2016.

Originally, the City hoped to house 450 veterans from June-December 2015. In actuality, the partnered social service agencies (including Community Warehouse) housed 690 homeless veterans in seven months.

Naomi, Case Manager from Transition Projects, spoke about the Warehouse’s impact on her program:

"I don’t know what Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) would do without Community Warehouse. They make the referral process really simple, and I have to say it’s one of my favorite parts about housing our participants. Community Warehouse staff are unfailingly polite and helpful to everyone who comes in, and generally the veteran leaves with much more than they expected to be able to get. I can house somebody, but it’s just a “unit” until they have gotten what they need from Community Warehouse to turn it into a home. Many of our veterans have nothing to their name and have been very disempowered by the experience of homelessness, and being able to furnish an entire place the way they would like helps them regain a sense of agency in their own lives."

In July, Community Warehouse received an incredible donation of 200 brand new Tempur-Pedic mattresses from Bed Mart to support this movement. That’s an in-kind donation of over $200,000 to help veterans and their families sleep in new, comfortable beds.

This month, please consider joining our partner agencies and companies in supporting Community Warehouse’s efforts to help veterans with children. Beds are a critical part of a stable home environment. You can provide this comfort and stability to our most vulnerable neighbors.

 

Warmly,

Dunetchka Otero-Serrano
Executive Director

Choosing items at the Warehouse is fun!
Choosing items at the Warehouse is fun!

I'm delighted to share one of our many stories from this summer...

Program Coordinators Erik and Woody had a furniture delivery scheduled for a single mom. She, her three daughters, and her son were moving into a new apartment. When Erik and Woody arrived at the apartment with the truck full of furniture and household items, the kids were jumping up and down with excitement. The youngest boy, only seven years old, volunteered to help move the furniture. Erik and Woody gave him one small box at a time and a ride on the truck lift - a special treat! 

Erik and Woody entered the apartment and saw nothing but empty rooms. In the bedrooms, there were piles of clothes that the family was using as sleeping nests. The kids were so happy to put their clothes in dressers and set up their very own beds!

At the Warehouse, we are incredibly fortunate to see the recipients of your support every day. Thank you for helping build stable and comfortable homes for our clients.

Warmly,

Anna

Most families served in a month - hooray!
Most families served in a month - hooray!

Dear Friends,

It has been an eventful summer! In the last month alone, Community Warehouse helped create homes for 605 people (including 284 children).

In June, Community Warehouse hosted Portland Mayor Charlie Hales for a furniture drive supporting veterans and their families. We will be receiving 200 brand-new twin Tempur-Pedic beds over the next 3 months from BedMart to support this initiative.

Also, we are excited to move forward with a project that has been a long time coming – painting and redesigning the front of our Portland Warehouse to increase visibility. Hundreds of people drive by our Portland Warehouse every day without even noticing our building. By increasing our visibility, we predict a 20% increase in donations and shoppers at our Estate Store. The extra funds and furniture donations will allow us to serve 500 more clients, including 200 children, in 2015 alone.

We are thrilled to announce that in July, Community Warehouse was selected as one of the top 100 nonprofits to work for by Oregon Business magazine.

Lastly, I would like to share this quote from a Community Warehouse staff member:

I walked into the empty room and saw a little boy taking a nap on the floor. He opened his eyes as we were carrying in a twin bed – HIS new bed – and he asked us if it was for him. Being able to answer ‘Yeah buddy, it’s all yours’ was such a powerful experience. The pride I felt at knowing the Community Warehouse had made such a difference in not only that boy’s life but his entire family’s was huge. I don’t think I have ever felt that way before.”

With your support, we can continue to provide the comforts of home to children and families in our community.

Warmly,

Anna Kurnizki, Development Manager

Even superheros need pots!
Even superheros need pots!
Named one of the 100 best nonprofits in Portland
Named one of the 100 best nonprofits in Portland
Excited to redesign our Warehouse
Excited to redesign our Warehouse
 

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Organization Information

Community Warehouse

Location: Portland, OR - USA
Website: http:/​/​communitywarehouse.org
Project Leader:
Anna Kurnizki
Portland, Oregon United States

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