It can be challenging to ensure that all of the key players are participants in the planning and implementation of community initiatives to end homelessness. This workshop will explore how to engage and work with faith-based providers who are key providers of services and transitional housing. Part of the discourse will include looking at philosophical differences among organizations as well as different service models and how they can be combined into a cohesive community response.
Best Practices in Working with Faith Community Direct Service Material Support Professional Services Financial Support Advocacy
What you need to have in place Expectations Time and leadership Clear and effective communication channels Patience and flexibility Specific calls to action
How to approach the faith community Ministerial/Interfaith Groups Existing agendas Inability to act as a group Overcommitted clergy Connections Internal referrals are best Lay leaders Face-to-face contact
Issues relevant to the faith community Social issues Serving unmarried or same sex couples Proselytizing Approach Other partners Involving children directly
Tips Ignorance beats assumption The more specific the better Use pictures, stories Have friends in the religious community help you find the language and references
Tips Talk: Find out where people you know worship, how engaged they are in issues and who to approach at the congregation—and use your connectors names Thank: Acknowledge everything a congregation does Leaders: Find lay leadership for your efforts Connect: Person-to-person connection, letters, emails