Local groups challenge Waco community to help end homelessness

State & Regional

WACO, Texas – The Heart of Texas Homeless Coalition is hosting their first 100-Day Youth Housing Challenge.

This is an opportunity as a community to house 35 people between the ages of 16 and 24 in safe and stable homes.

“So we’re working together as community partners to locate housing and housing resources to get youth stably housed,” says Nicole Wiscombe, 100 Day Challenge Co-Lead & Vice Chair of the Heart of Texas Homeless Coalition.

In the previous years, the City of Waco has seen a large population of homeless youth.

“As a community, we found that there are definitely gaps in needs that we have, and one of those is finding housing for youth,” says Wiscombe.

As a way to end homelessness in Central Texas.

“We’ve been partnering with all of our community partners – so, other social service organizations, faith-based organizations in pulling resources, seeking out donations,” says Wiscombe.

This is the first year that Heart of Texas has created a 100-Day Challenge. They are asking for the community to donate items to be used for “move-in kits” – such as bedroom, bathroom, living space and cleaning essentials.

“We’re doing it now because we have resources. We have dollars in our community that we’ve never had before to house youth experiencing homelessness,” says Cove Executive Director Kelly Atkinson.

Together with local school districts, corporate partners and social service providers, the HOTRMHMR Klaras Center for Families, The Cove, and the Family Abuse Center are working together to rapidly move youth into housing.

Not only are they needing donations, but they are asking landlords for their help to house these youths.

“If we have landlords or individuals who own apartment units who are willing to rent to youth who don’t have a rental history, we need your support,” says Atkinson.

The Cove is still looking for donations. They still need welcome baskets for youth moving into apartments. Items can be dropped off with Natalie McClure at The DOBEY Center on 2111 Austin Avenue from Monday through Friday, between 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. You can call or text her at (254) 652-7764.

For additional move-in-items, you can click the link to the 100-Day Challenge Amazon Wishlist: http://ow.ly/Vd2K50FPYRQ

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