Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Help Your Neighbors Help Themselves

Leslie Turk, of The Independent, wrote an excellent piece about Acadiana Outreach Center's big Palates and Pate' fundraiser being held tomorrow night at the Cajundome Convention Center. It's the kind of article we here at The Daily Meaux would have liked to have written. Especially, since having been kicked to the curb by the faceless, souless, corporate machine, fully one half of the Meaux staff (the better half) now works for Acadiana Outreach. The other half washes dogs for a living and day dreams about having once been a minor local rock star.

Be that as it may, Turk, a real journalist (unlike us here at TDM) knows where to put her apostrophes and knows a good organization when she sees one. Her article points out the importance of the work being done by the Acadiana Outreach Center, and the need for the community to help support their efforts. Indeed, Turk points out that area contributions are matched by federal funds thus far bringing in $11.4 million to the area since the fundraiser's inception in 2001. That's a lot of millions y'all, going to help our fellow residents here in Acadiana. About 30 percent of Acadiana Outreach Center’s operating budget is funded by Palates & Paté, with donations used as matching funds to draw federal dollars into our community. For more information on the center’s work and programs, click here. Below is a glimpse into the Outreach Center’s work since Palates and Pate was launched nine years ago:
From the article:
Increased clients served by 380 percent:
• Provided 10,884 low-income adults and 2,450 children with case management, rental assistance and other stabilizing services
• Opened the Lighthouse Women’s & Children’s shelter, helping 810 women and 378 children since 2004
• Graduated 100+ clients from addictions recovery to live fulfilling and independent lives

Significant economic and community impact:
• Reinvested funds in employing people, providing services to help clients become tax-paying residents, paying rents to local landlords, and purchasing from local businesses
• Shifted from providing shelter to addressing root causes of addiction and lack of safe, affordable housing

Transitioned from a traditional charity solely dependent on donations to a social enterprise:
• Provided market-based solution by launching a 90-bed behavioral health center helping Louisiana residents of all backgrounds overcome addiction and mental illness (December 2009)
• Catalyzing $25 million in mixed-income housing development (2009-2011)
• Secured U.S. Congressional seed funding for urban revitalization model (2007, 2009)
For more information or to purchase tickets, call 237-7618. Tickets will also be sold at the door.

More of Turk's story here.

Image is Steve Schneider's "Belle Fields", which will be auctioned off at the gala.

No comments:

Post a Comment