Buena Park homeless outreach program connecting people to resources

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Buena Park homeless outreach program connecting people to resources

Over the several past months, Bright Paths staff and volunteers have been reaching out to Buena Parks homeless neighbors, identifying those in need and connecting them with the proper resources to help transition them off the streets.

Since initial outreach began in April, the program has made contact with more than 160 homeless individuals. As of mid-September, Bright Paths assisted 40 individuals transition off the street and into temporary or permanent housing.

We are pleased with the success weve had so far in such a short amount of time, said Buena Park police Sgt. Brad Geyer, a Bright Paths homeless liaison officer. Each week, our team of Bright Paths staff and volunteers are out in the community. We are building relationships and trust with our homeless neighbors to assist them in taking the first step towards getting off the streets.

Tahne Hannen, a Bright Paths intern, knows first-hand about homelessness. She was homeless as a teen, spending more than a year on the streets of Los Angeles and Orange County. Now, nearly 12 years later, she is enrolled in the Masters of Social Work program at Cal State Fullerton and plans to dedicate her career to helping the homeless and mentally ill.

I love making a difference, said Hannen. When a person is homeless, they dont always know what support is available, making it difficult to navigate through the steps to find a way out. The Bright Paths program allows us to bring the support directly to the people who need our help.

For more information about the Bright Paths program, or to learn how to get involved, please visit www.buenapark.com.

About Buena Park homeless outreach program Bright Paths

Bright Paths assists the homeless in becoming an independent and functioning member of the community by providing the necessary resources to take the step of graduating from the streets and into permanent housing. The program also provides the tools to educate local residents, businesses, and faith-based organizations about homelessness and the resources available to empower these groups to help decrease homelessness in their neighborhoods. For more information, or to learn how to get involved, visit www.buenapark.com/brightpaths.

SOURCE: OC BREEZE