180one Gives Back: Portland Homeless Family Solutions

180one is proud to partner with organizations that work to support and uplift Portland. Throughout the year, we’ll be giving back across the city and sharing about the organizations we work with and our experiences here on The Water Cooler. Follow along to find out when and where you can meet us out in the community!

PHFS Logo

Last week the 180one team headed downtown to volunteer with Portland Homeless Family Solutions (PHFS), an organization that provides shelter and support to 8 homeless families with children in the Portland metro. 

Originally founded in 1994 with the opening of the Goose Hollow Family Shelter (GHFS), PHFS operates two shelters to house families year-round. GHFS provides night housing for PHFS families and is the only shelter for families on the west side of the Willamette River. During the day, PHFS runs theThirteen Salmon Family Center (13Salmon), where families meet weekly with Housing Specialist Case Managers to develop housing, career and financial action plans.

But year-round shelters aren’t all that PHFS offers. The organization staffs 2 full-time Housing Retention Specialists who help families find permanent housing and work with them for 6-12 months to ensure their stability. The Village Support Network (VSN) program also supports families’ transitions from shelter to housing by helping them find community support in their neighborhoods, work on financial goals and identify employment opportunities. Each year, PHFS serves about 200 families (which is more than 600 individuals) and successfully helps 90% of families find permanent housing.

180one Gives Back: PHFSFor our time at PHFS, 180one collected household items like laundry detergent, sponges and trashcans to assemble Housewarming Baskets to give to families as they move out of shelter and into permanent housing. We also sorted through clothing donations and organized a few of the communal living spaces at GHFS so families could come back to tidy living that night. Interested in volunteering your time or resources? Head to the PHFS website to find a list of donation items that PHFS accepts, as well as other ways to get involved.

Right now, though, one of the most critical needs PHFS has is housing. You probably know that Portland’s housing market is tight, but did you know that the Rose City is currently short about 24,000 affordable housing units? That’s why you’ll find a bond measure on the November 8 ballot that would fund the construction or acquisition of up to 1,300 rental units for low-income residents. To educate yourself about #Yes4Homes before the election, check out these resources: Yes to Affordable Homes / Welcome Home Coalition / Oregon Public Broadcasting / Portland Mercury / Portland Business Journal

Thank you to PHFS for hosting us and sharing more about your organization and a critical issue facing our community.