Posted by Susan Kowalski on Oct 14, 2019
Today Renee McKarge and Lorraine Zaksek from Journey to Housing visited the Club and spoke to us about the organization and about our upcoming District Grant Project where we will help Journey to Housing as they resettle working homeless families into permanent housing. 
Renee McKarge is the Executive Director of Journey to Housing, a part of St. Vincent de Paul Society.  Lorraine Zaksek is the founder of the organization which started with the idea to transition just one family from homelessness to housing.  To date they have transitioned 29 families from homelessness to housing.  Renee said that prayer is a big part of their success.  The goal of the organization is long-term self sufficiency for families.  They work especially for a better life for kids.  Journey is NOT an emergency service.  It is a "hand up and not a hand out."  They work with families in Western Wayne County who are homeless and employed.  The idea is to transition them to housing and give them hope, long-term stability, and self sufficiency.  They make sure the children are in school, and they teach families what it means to be self-sufficient.  Some of the problems that they tackle are - providing a financial coach to help solve the income or expense problem or a combination of the two, finding child care, and helping them increase their income.  Some of the items that Journey provides to their families are new beds, used furniture, furnishings for the kitchen and bathroom, bedding, linens, etc.  They don't help so much that it hurts people.  The average size of the family in the program is between 1 and 6 children.  The organization if now five years old.  The organization's help is especially meaningful to the "hidden homeless".  The Canton Rotary will be coming alongside Journey to Housing and using our District Grant to purchase items for and assemble kitchen kits, bathroom kits, and activity night kits for families.  We estimate that we will be able to purchase these kits for between 5 and 10 families, depending on what sales we can take advantage of and what is needed in the kits.  Thank you Renee and Lorraine for speaking to us today.  We are anxious to work on this project.
Please see our list of upcoming speakers and calendar of events.  Events to take special notice of are The World Polio Day Yoga Event, The Thanksgiving Luncheon, donation of stuffing mix for the Salvation Army Thanksgiving Baskets, items to purchase for Senior Citizen Christmas Baskets, and Salvation Army Bell Ringing at Busch's on November 16th.