Greetings, P&D readers!

We have reached November, and like every other month, we can pick from a vast array of “National Days” to celebrate or “Awareness Weeks” to join. After a brief search, I have discovered that this month is host to “International Stress Awareness Week” and “National Spa Week,” which go hand in hand in my mind! However, my personal favorite is “National Nacho Day” on Nov. 6, because who doesn’t enjoy a nice plate of nachos? At Pathways, we will be participating in “Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week” from Nov. 13-21. We will be bringing awareness to our mission and the work our team does to address homelessness in our region on our social media accounts and throughout the community.

Perhaps more important is the idea of “thankfulness” that is spread throughout the month of November. While it may be redundant, I like to share some of Pathways’ “thanks” in this column every year at this time. While we at Pathways have so much for which we are thankful throughout each year, it feels great to be able to write an entire article about this topic.

At Pathways, we are thankful for the 20+ partner agencies that collaborate with us to meet the needs of those we serve. When someone is starting over, there are often a wide variety of needs to be met. It isn’t realistic for one entity to specialize in everything. I’ve said it before, and I’ll continue to say it, it takes an entire community to be successful in the field of social work. Pathways would not be successful without these partnerships.

We are thankful to the talented workers that helped us complete Phase 1 of our expansion (basement renovation). They were incredibly respectful to our clients, staff and volunteers throughout the process. They worked around our schedules and were flexible when we needed them to be. (A quick note: We are starting the hiring process for our basement staff. Once they are in place, we should be ready to begin operations!)

We are thankful for our donors and grantors, who truly believe in our mission and vision of breaking the cycle of homeless in those we serve. The monetary and physical goods we receive throughout each year are crucial to providing our services. Pathways does not sell a tangible product. Rather, our “product” is using our time and talents to improve the lives of those we serve. As our capacity doubles and grows over the next couple of years, we will need to gain even more support from our community. When a need has arisen in the past, our community has answered. I am confident that as we grow, your support will grow with us.

Lastly, I am thankful for the people I have the pleasure of working alongside every day. We have had over 100 volunteers in 2021 who have donated their time and talents to support our mission. We have Board members that are heavily invested in our mission, and are always there when we need help. We have a team of 6 staff members that live our mission inside and outside of Pathways. To see what we’ve accomplished together since we moved into our current location is impressive, in my eyes. In no way are we perfect, because we have certainly made mistakes. However, we have learned from those and continually aim to build a stronger agency. As we move through our phases of expansion, we will encounter unknown challenges. As a community, we will work through these barriers and continue to build a strong foundation, ultimately providing greater opportunities for those we serve.

So, what are you thankful for this month? On behalf of all of us at Pathways, we are thankful for YOU.

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OCTOBER STATISTICS

• Emergency Shelter

We served 40 people in September for 604 nights: 18 men, 11 women and 11 children. Of the 40 people, there were 4 families, 15 individual men and 6 individual women.

There are currently 69 people on our waiting list to enter shelter: 14 individual men, 10 individual women and 13 families with 8 men, 14 women and 23 children.

As of Nov. 3, there were 18 people in 12 households in shelter (several rooms are in transition, so the number is lower than usual). Of the 18 people, there are 6 individual men, 4 individual women and 2 families with 5 children.

• Homeless Prevention

One new Homeless Prevention enrollment took place in October (1F, 1M, 1C). HP services for October are estimated at $850.

• Rapid Rehousing

Three households began Rapid Rehousing enrollments in October (1F, 2M, 0C). RH services for October estimated at $2,970.

• Security Deposit Assistance Program (SDAP)

No SDAP services were provided in October due to a lack of funding. The new award was received, and we have begun services again as of Nov. 2.

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CURRENT NEEDS

We are looking for a variety of volunteer help at Pathways! Head to our website to see a detailed list of volunteer opportunities.

If you are interested in donating supplies, please find our updated wish list at www.yanktonpathways.org/give.

Pathways Shelter for the Homeless serves the immediate needs of individuals and families experiencing homelessness within the Yankton area, while engaging partners in developing long-term solutions. The shelter was founded on the belief that everyone deserves a home.

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