Last week I met up with Erin Skaar with CARE, Inc (Community Action Resource Enterprise) to help get a better understanding of what services CARE provides to the community, as well as what the community can provide CARE.
Located on 1st Street in Tillamook, CARE began operation in 1991. Their goal is preventing and ending homelessness.
They provide a variety of services to the community including, but not limited to:
Two of the biggest requests, Skaar stated, are for Utilities and Rent assistance. This can be in the form of helping with deposits or just making ends meet for a month. They also receive requests for shower vouchers as well as senior bus passes.
The community is also served by two assisted living facilities that CARE operates; Nehalem Bay House and Kilchis House. These facilities, with 30-34 rooms each, provide assisted living care for seniors and disabled. CARE is able to operate these facilities at half the cost of for profit facilities.
Housing assistance is one of the most requested services from clients. For some, there is just a need in help getting a deposit put down for housing. For others, longer term assistance is needed. CARE is able to help find placement as well as financial assistance.
In cases where a person is homeless, some services include providing tarps, tents, and sleeping bags that can help provide some comfort.
CARE does operate a warning shelter in the winter season. The goal is to not have anyone die due to exposure. Although it is temporary in nature, it allows CARE staff to reach out to current and new clients to provide assistance. Although CARE does not operate the shelter near the blimp hangar, they do maintain a good working partnership with them.
There is a homeless shelter out near the blimp base that is not operated by CARE, but they do have a partnership with them.
CARE also provides services for veterans. They have staff that are specific for the support of our veterans.
Healthy Families is for those expecting or who have an infant. They are there to support and focus on helping navigate parenthood. They come to the home once a week for 3 to 6 months.
What you can do
There is so much you can do! First of all: If you know of anyone in need, please refer them to CARE.
CARE has a bowl-a-thon every year that raises $23,000 to $25,000 a year. But they are always in need of more help! There are times when they run out of funds before the month is up! What can you do?