Metro Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless do you need help? want to help?
ABOUT US | GET INVOLVED | CHANGE YOUR MIND | PROGRAMS & SERVICES | STAY INFORMED | OUR VISION

WHAT KIND OF PROGRAMS DO YOU HAVE TO GET PEOPLE BACK ON THEIR FEET?

Through our 24-Hour Hotline and Street Outreach, we serve as a coordinating agency of services and information for people to access. We operate a Day Service Center with case managers and other workers who help people find housing options, job programs, and other necessary services. We place approximately 60 people into permanent jobs every month. We also run a 24- Hour Hotline that people call looking for housing or shelter. We make every effort to find people a place to go before they come here, but the unfortunate reality is that the need for shelter always outweighs the supply. Our Resident Volunteer Program has 42 participants, and they provide essential services to the community by helping supervise daytime services and providing security for the building. They also receive a permanent bed and storage in exchange for volunteering 24 hours a week. Our Transitional Housing program houses 28 men who are moving closer to self-sustainability. Those men work 24 hours a week to help run the services at the Task Force. In addition to all these programs, we have many other things going on here such as vision screenings (glasses), health screenings, job training fairs, photography and art classes, GED classes, tax training classes (H&R Block), etc.

DO YOU TRACK INDIVIDUALS, AND IF SO WHAT IS THE RATE OF PEOPLE FINDING JOBS OR HOUSING?

We help an average of 60 people each month find living wage jobs and housing. We find shelter/transitional or permanent housing at other locations for 400-500 people each month. There is almost always a shortage of shelter beds and low-incoming housing options for the people we serve. When these options come available, we do our best to connect people with them.

back to top

DO YOU HAVE A TIME LIMIT FOR HOW LONG PEOPLE CAN STAY AND USE THE SHELTER?

No. Each individual is given intake assessment and helped to get to the next step in life. Because there is a severe lack of residential treatment beds for those people who need residential mental health care and/or substance recovery, we shelter very fragile people until they choose other options or other options become available. When we are aware of income and other resources for residents of our Overflow Shelter, we assist them to find other options. For the Transitional Housing Program, each person can participate for a maximum of two years.

back to top

WHY IS THERE OFTEN A LARGE NUMBER OF PEOPLE OUTSIDE ON THE SIDEWALKS?

Sometimes during daily clean-ups, and depending on the weather, guests wait on the sidewalk for the floors to dry. Also, during the day, people walk back and forth from jobs, from Crossroads, and the Health Clinic to Peachtree- Pine. Additionally, this area is a dynamic place with lots of people coming and going, and that is what sidewalks are used for.

back to top

DO YOU SCREEN WHO COMES IN AND OUT OF YOUR BUILDING?

Each person who stays is required to sign in and receive an intake, which is kept in our database and updated. Anyone who is homeless or at imminent risk of homelessness can be served by the Task Force for the Homeless. We provide support to individuals through our telephone HOTLINE, with a goal of serving them without their having to come to the building.

back to top

HOW MANY PEOPLE CAN YOU HOLD?

We have a capacity in the overflow shelter and drop-in space of 1,000. While we seldom reach that number, on cold nights when we run outreach buses all night, we need that option.

back to top

DO YOU HAVE A CURFEW?

Yes. It is 7pm for the men in the overflow facility and 10pm for residents of transitional housing. Curfew is 7pm for the women who wait here for shelter. Exceptions are made for those who are working past these hours. If people are outside the building after these respective times, they are not staying here. The only people associated with Peachtree-Pine who are outside after these hours ate the Resident Volunteers and the Overnight Supervisor performing security patrols. Wake-up time is 6:am but no one is required to leave the building at that time.

back to top

WE SEE ALL KINDS OF BUSES DROPPING OFF PEOPLE. WHO ARE THEY, AND WHERE ARE THEY COMING FROM?

The buses are not bringing in more homeless people, but are simply transporting people to and from different locations. The Task Force owns and operates a white Bluebird bus. Our drivers transport women to the day shelter in the morning, and if there is not shelter for them by that afternoon, the bus brings them back to the Task Force in the evening where they will temporarily stay until shelter can be found for them. Additionally, churches often come and pick up people staying here and take them to worship services, GED classes and training, and sometimes even theatre, symphony and movies. There are two white school buses from Body of Christ Church International and sometimes red and blue school buses from Rescue Atlanta that frequently provide these services.

back to top

DO PRISONS COME AND DROP PEOPLE OFF DIRECTLY FROM JAIL?

No busloads of prisoners are brought to the Task Force at Peachtree-Pine and unloaded here. Occasionally a police officer brings an individual to our facility because that individual has no place to go. Jailing homeless people who are not criminals is neither just nor cost-effective. People who are released from jails and prisons have very few options, and finding permanent secure housing is one of the greatest challenges. The Task Force is an options for some of those people, and we work with them to secure employment and housing.

back to top

WHAT KIND OF SECURITY DO YOU HAVE INSIDE AND OUTSIDE THE BUILDING?

Every weekday, there is a full staff that monitors what goes on inside and outside the building. Every night of the week we have an overnight supervisor who coordinates and oversees the activities in and around the building. We also have 45 Resident Volunteers who work 25 hours a week helping maintain the building and provide security. These individuals also do rounds and help to keep the sidewalks clear, safe and clean.

back to top

WE HAVE HEARD THAT YOU ARE GOING TO EXPAND YOUR CAPACITY, IS THIS TRUE?

We have no plans to expand the size of our emergency shelter facility. The number of people may vary depending on weather, etc. Of course, we serve more people in the extreme heat or cold than we do during other times, but that is understandable. Our facility operates no differently this year than in any of the previous years. We are, however, planning to complete the development of the building, with an emphasis on the unused portions. We are developing a process to plan community involvement and support. It is our goal to bring many different groups of people to this building as well as continue to provide essential services to the community.

back to top

WHAT IS YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH CROSSROADS MINISTRIES?

Crossroads is a separate non-profit organization serving people who are homeless. We have no control over their activities, but sometimes refer people to them, and vice-versa.

back to top

ARE THERE PEOPLE IN THE PARKS BECAUSE THERE IS A HOMELESS SHELTER NEARBY?

Our Street Outreach Staff and some of the volunteers are meeting these people, offering assistance, and giving them other opportunities for places to be and for assistance. The history of this neighborhood is that for years there have been hundreds of homeless people living on the streets, in the parks and in otherwise semi-visible locations. Some of the people who stay in the parks and on the streets are there because they havent complied with the rules and regulations of our facility. Most people will agree that there was a larger number of people in the parks and on the streets before the Task Force received the Peachtree-Pine building. Since that time, the streets immediately surrounding the Peachtree-Pine Building have been cleaned up significantly.

back to top

DO YOU SCREEN FOR WEAPONS OR DRUGS?

We post no weapons and no illegal substances requirements throughout the buildings as well as present it at intake for signature. We drug test all resident volunteers and transitional residents.

back to top

CAN I COME BY AND SEE WHAT YOU DO?

Yes. We are available for anyone to come and look around or even volunteer. We are very excited about what we are doing, and the future possibilities of this facility. You can either come by or call us to set up a tour.

back to top

Copyright 2007 Metro Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless