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Winter Hospitality Overflow (WHO) was established in 2003 to help bridge the gap between limited shelter space and the increased need for warm, safe overnight accommodations during Vancouver’s coldest months. The WHO is an interfaith and community-supported program entering its twenty-first year of service, and we are asking for your financial support to help us continue to provide this essential service.

Since 2020, our community partners have provided overnight staffing and case management for the WHO. Engagement Specialists from Outsiders Inn and Share help guests connect with resources such as job searching, other shelter programs, treatment centers, sober housing, and permanent housing. However, it has also resulted in a significant increase in our expenses.

That’s why we have set a fundraising goal of $50,000 for 2023/24. Your financial support will help us to:

  • Continue to provide overnight staffing and case management.
  • Cover the costs of incidental needs: food, clothing, and essential supplies.
  • Maintain our facilities in safe and habitable condition.

Your gift, no matter the size, will make a difference in the lives of our guests. Every night, the WHO provides a warm bed, a hot meal, and a safe place for adults and children who would otherwise be houseless. We are grateful for your support in helping us to make our community a more compassionate and inclusive place for everyone.

The Council for the Homeless provides fiduciary oversight, financial management, and other administrative services to help support the WHO. Your online gift is automatically credited to the WHO, or mail a check to the Council for the Homeless, 2500 Main Street, Vancouver, WA 98660. Please put “WHO” in the memo line.

Thank you for your partnership with the WHO!

Your financial donations make a difference:
  • Platinum Level $750+ provides 15 hours of case management to identify barriers & solutions
  • Gold Level $500 provides 16 shelter nights for a family of 3
  • Silver Level $250 provides 4 soap & shampoo dispensers for the showers
  • Bronze Level $100 provides one month of coffee
  • Friend Level $25 provides milk for 3 days

 

Support the WHO!

Although we are a volunteer-driven program, WHO incurs expenses for utilities, groceries, volunteer training materials, and salaries for professional case management staff. You can help with a tax-deductible donation to WHO. Just $28 meets our weekly costs for one guest. Gifts small or large truly make a difference. Thank you for your support of this vital ministry.

To access WHO beds

If you need access to an WHO bed, please contact the Council for the Homeless Housing Hotline: 360-695-9677.

Facebook Posts

Re-Imagining: Volunteers at WHO St. Paul Men’s Shelter:Do you remember the old days of volunteering at WHO St. Paul Men’s Shelter? We volunteers did everything: supervised chores by our guys, cleaned, did laundry, served meals, enforced rules… And nodded politely to Share’s professional caseworker staff when they came in to meet with the guys, and when they left.But the world has changed. In the spring of 2020, St. Paul received an Affordable Housing grant from the City of Vancouver to keep the shelter open through the summer months. St. Paul contracted with a then-small start-up non-profit, Outsiders Inn, to staff and manage the new “Outsiders Inn at St. Paul” from April through October 2020. The plan was that WHO St. Paul would go back to its normal volunteer-driven service in the fall of 2020.But in the fall of 2020, COVID meant that for WHO, it became much harder to recruit volunteers. Share provided increased client care overnight services at WHO St. Andrew. At WHO St. Paul, Outsiders Inn obtained new government and ELCA funding and continued to staff and manage the shelter. Volunteers have continued to provide most of the meals, but it has been difficult to figure out where non-staff volunteers fit in.Since the beginning of the 2023 WHO season, we at St. Paul have been considering the best ways to call in-person volunteers back in. The first step, for a few months now, has been major efforts by Sue Meyer from Congregation Kol Ami to identify and coordinate all of the online volunteer sign-up websites at WHO, St. Paul, Council for the Homeless, the LDS JustServe site, and The Columbian’s publication of these links. That work is done.So now we come to the part that requires long-term vision, and imagination.What should volunteers physically do, when there are full-time professional staff present, doing what volunteers used to do? How can volunteers be of most help to the guys, when all of the Outisders Inn professional staff has lived experience of homelessness, but volunteers mostly do not?What will be the long-term impact on the WHO program if we fail to continue to involve community volunteers in ways that have significant interaction with our guests?We at St. Paul plan to schedule meetings for discussion of these issues with Outsiders Inn and their volunteer coordinator in early January. Do you have ideas? Additional questions? Would you like to be involved in the discussions? Please contact Pastor Linda Marousek at lmarousek@comcast.net, or Sue Meyer at suemeyer18@gmail.com. We’d love to have your input. ... See MoreSee Less
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