Homeless folks come from all walks of life and have varied backgrounds. While many have come from dysfunctional familes, others have had normal, nuturing upbringings. Some have found themselves homeless through circumstance, bad choices or a combination of the two. Others are the victims of mental disorders. Many homeless individuals either have, or are struggling with, substance abuse issues. Once a person has become homeless it becomes increasingly difficult to get out of this situation. Too often homeless individuals turn to alcohol or drugs to cope and make life bearable. Many enter a cycle that makes it difficult to find employment and often results in run-ins with the law, which perpetuates the cycle. All homeless individuals have one thing in common: each is a human being just like everyone else, and each has a story.
Lawless activity is never tolerated at the Warming Station or Day Center. Any violation of the law is reported promptly to the police. If it becomes known that an individual has an outstanding warrant for their arrest the police are notified. This not only helps keep our facilities safe, but also is in the individual's best interest. Guests who violate the law are normally trespassed from the facilities. The police are always welcome at all Neighbor 2 Neighbor facilities.
Chief Roberts of the Pendleton Police Department has expressed support for the Warming Station at city council meetings. Having a refuge from the cold weather keeps homeless individuals from committing criminal trespass to find shelter. It also helps prevent other minor crimes such as shop lifting.
As of the 2015 season there has never been a serious incident at the Warming Station or Day Center. No guest or volunteer has ever been assaulted or seriously threatened inside either facility. There has been a handful of minor incidents of disorderly conduct since the Warming Station opened. The police have arrested a small number of individuals for outstanding warrants at the station. In 2014 there was one incident involving harrassment between guests outside but on the grounds of the facility. To date the most serious incident occurred after the station closed in 2014. Unfortunately a former guest broke into the facility and damaged the camera system. He was subsequently apprehended due to an alert neighbor.
Volunteers come from many different backgrounds. Some are associated with local churches. Others belong to service clubs. Many are just concerned citizens with no particular affiliation other than a desire to help those who are less fortunate. While many volunteers are motivated by their faith, others are motivated by personal philosophy or ethics. We are a coalition of concerned citizens representing diverse beliefs but committed to the mission of Neighbor 2 Neighbor. Volunteers at the Warming Station and Day Center must fill out an application, pass a background check and receive training. See thevolunteer sectionfor more information.
One or two N2N Board members work at Veda's Breakfast. Other volunteers show up and do not have to be official volunteers with N2N. Veda's Breakfast helpers do not have to have food handler cards; our Board members meet those requirements. Veda's Breakfast helpers usually show up between 0630 and 0700. Pleasecontact usif you have further questions.
No. Our volunteers all have other commitments in their lives. All volunteer what they are able. Any amount of time helps.
Volunteer training normally lasts three to four hours, and includes safety awareness, communication skills and station/center operations.