The City of Lincoln City hosted a meet-and-greet for Helping Hands Reentry Thursday, Jan. 30 where CEO Alan Evans gave a presentation on structure and functions of homeless outreach services and transitional housing.
“We live in a society that makes it hard to make ends meet,” Evans said. “Everybody deserves a chance. Everybody has a story.”
During the presentation, Evans covered the evaluation process that allows Helping Hands staff to pinpoint needs and roadmaps to success. He went over data the outreach center collects and how it helps the nonprofit help the homeless get back on their feet with housing and breaking down barriers to employment.
“We’ve never failed to place a person in housing,” he said. “We do the best we can.”
Evans gave a tentative timeline for placement of homeless in permanent housing at around 6-8 months with a “soft cap” of 18 months, but cautioned everyone’s needs are different and it was hard to put an exact date on his services.
Congregational Church member Jay Roelof said Helping Hands had a great opportunity to do some good work here in Lincoln City and brought up the “unvetted” homeless population problem.
Local business owner Randy Mallette asked pointed questions of Evans, drawing the City Manager’s attention once again with a reminder to stay within the bounds of the meeting’s purpose.
Evans fielded the question, “where people go after the program,” but the question was ultimately redirected by City Manager Ron Chandler who wanted to keep the discussion geared towards “meeting Helping Hands.”
“I’ve got a million questions,” Mallette said.
“And I’ve got a million answers,” Chandler replied. “Grab a card from the back and contact me after the meeting.”
Lincoln City Woods Apartments owners were at the meeting but due to legal advisement, declined to ask questions or engage with Helping Hands, who reportedly hired an attorney in response to the apartment owners challenging the City’s and Helping Hands transitional housing deal.
Mallette asked questions surrounding the legal challenge and was told there would be no discussion about any legal issues.
City Council members were not in attendance.