Meet Lisa Schultz – Emergency Shelter Program Specialist
Q: How long have you been at Helping Hand House?
A: I’ve been with HHH as the Emergency Shelter Program Specialist since February of 2016. Prior to that, I worked as the director of Open Hearth Ministries for 6 years. I always worked closely with HHH to serve homeless families during that time. Now that OHM has joined Helping Hand House as a new program, I’m excited for what our future holds.
Q: What is your primary focus at Helping Hand House?
A: My primary focus is moving homeless families from the street or their cars into emergency housing for 30-45 days. Once there, I provide case management to help them move forward. During this time, I make sure their children are taken care of, teach them budgeting and other general life skills, and encourage them as they look for their new home.
Q: What inspires you to do the type of work you do?
A: I enjoy providing life skills and encouraging families who are in crisis, seeing little improvements along the way. I am a firm believer in planting seeds of faith, hope, and encouragement for families who want to escape homelessness and get into permanent housing.
Q: What is the biggest change you’ve seen with the homeless population over the years you’ve been with Helping Hand House?
A: The toughest change is seeing more families, even with both parents working full-time jobs, who still can’t afford rent without assistance. There are many more families affected in this way than I’ve seen in the past. A great change is that Helping Hand House is becoming much more proficient in taking families from living in their cars, getting them into emergency housing, offering the right kind of support, and helping them move into their new home.
Q: If there was one thing you would want people to know by reading this, what would it be?
A: You cannot easily identify a family as “homeless” just by looking at them. They look just like your neighbors or the people you see shopping at the local Fred Meyer. These families try hard to just blend in and not draw attention themselves – and they’re good at it. But they do need help. Change CAN happen for these families, and I see that change every day at Helping Hand House…