Continuing to Accompany Our Neighbors in Need
The poor were hit first and hardest during the pandemic. They will take the longest to recover and return to stability. Two areas require growth and innovation: food security and housing.
Williamsburg House of Mercy Food Project:
Increasing distribution to more than 1.3 million pounds of food has illuminated the need for additional cold storage capacity. Our food project gives us the ability to:
- bring in larger volumes of food
- work with other agencies and organizations that do not have the capacity to receive, sort, and pack food but still need to distribute food to neighbors in need
- continue to supply the same or a higher volume of clients in our daily drive-thru
By moving food packaging and warehousing activities off-site, we can safely move our Community Kitchen daily soup kitchen meal and our Harbor Day Shelter for the Homeless back indoors.
Housing Office Changes:
On any given day throughout the year, we are consistently case managing between 50-60 individuals. To keep up with these increased needs we are adding two additional case managers to specialize as:
1. Job Navigator: Our job navigator will help develop individualized career development plan, workforce training, job seeking skills, financial literacy, awareness of technical and certificate training programs, and job placement assistance.
2. Family Case Manager: Families and children need specialized care to move from homelessness to stable housing.
“Going the Distance” Campaign:
To make this growth possible, we are kicking off the final phase of the renovation plan we began in 2018. This final project will bring about two major changes to our office:
1. We are adding a second mezzanine level to accommodate an expanded Mercy Housing program. This summer we will welcome new Mercy Housing staff, along with a new classroom and training space that can be used to offer things like job training and program application assistance.
2. We have designed a larger, handicapped-accessible reception area that will be welcoming to our neighbors in need, volunteers, and visitors. This new space will also mean that there will be no more waiting outside while waiting for your appointment!
We hope to have the project completed this summer. The projected cost is approximately $400,000. We have applied for and received local grants like the Impact100 from the Peninsula Community Foundation for $50,000!
Our construction grants will start the project off, but if you would like to assist in our “Going the Distance” renovation project or join in our mission at any level, please contact:
- Executive Director, Shannon Woloszynowski [email protected],
- Development and Communications Director, Nicole Lancour at [email protected].
To donate directly, visit our donation page and select “Building Fund” or mail checks written to Williamsburg House of Mercy to 10 Harrison Avenue, Williamsburg, VA 23185.