I found out last night from a neighbor that SHARE is opening an indoor homeless shelter at the Gift of Grace Lutheran Church in Wallingford (2102 North 40th Street).

SHARE is Seattle Housing and Resource Effort. According to its website, SHARE is a partner organization of homeless and formerly homeless men and women that provides King County’s largest shelter network, with fifteen indoor shelters and two tent cities. All their efforts are self-managed, run by the homeless members themselves. In addition, the organization facilitates WHEEL (Women’s Housing Equality and Enhancement League), a storage locker program, and a housing-for-work program called Share2.

Gift of Grace will be the host of the newest SHARE location, providing a coed overnight shelter for up to 15 adults, operating from 7pm to 7am seven days a week. The shelter will be at the church for one year. The church is also the home of Huckleberry Forest Preschool of Arts and Sciences.

According to a flier  my neighbor received, there will be a meeting at the church to discuss the shelter this Sunday at noon:

On Sunday September 12th, 2010 at 12pm there will be a meal and meeting for the immediate neighbors of the Gift of Grace Lutheran Church. The meeting will be held at the Gift of Grace Lutheran Church Fellowship Hall. The purpose of this meeting is to provide neighbors with an opportunity to learn more about the SHARE Indoor Shelter – a temporary shelter that has been invited to stay at the Gift of Grace Church. Comments and suggestions from the neighbors are encouraged as a way of assisting SHARE and the Gift of Grace Church in reducing any possible impact of the shelter in the neighborhood. SHARE spokespeople will provide details about the SHARE shelter and Gift of Grace church leaders will answer questions about their hosting of the shelter.

SHARE has operated several other indoor housing shelters in local neighborhoods, including Greenlake and Ballard, to mixed results. On September 8, 2010, SHARE and Bethany Lutheran Church representatives spoke at the Greenlake Community Council meeting where organizers expressed their views that since the opening of the shelter on July 15th, there has not been negative impact on the community. On the flip side, the Ballard location was closed down in late 2009, after  the community, Calvary Lutheran Church, and SHARE failed to reach an agreement on a revised screening protocol to include a check for sex offenders. The precipitating incident was the discovery of a Level III sex offender at the shelter. The identification of the sex offender was provided through a citizen forum post on a local community blog. Once confirmed, the sex offender who had been living there for a few weeks, was removed by SHARE members.

If you are interested in learning more about the Wallingford location, have questions, or want to share your opinion, please consider attending the meeting on Sunday. You can also contact Pastor Fecher at the Gift of Grace Lutheran Church or the SHARE office at (206) 448-7889.


  • Ballardite

    Steve – When dogs start wearing pants and underwear, you might have a point. Until then, that’s quite a mind you’ve got there.

  • J.

    homeless = dog !?

    Steve, let’s be a little bit more respectful.

  • Chris

    For those of you who plan to write/call the Seattle City Council, there was a law signed last year which grants churches the right to house the homeless without getting hassled by local ordinances, (and they don’t have to have liability insurance either) but it does NOT apply to issues of health and safety.
    So you may want to mention something like the following (feel free to cut/paste).
    “While I understand the signing of House Bill 1956 into law grants broad authority to religious organizations to provide shelter or housing to homeless persons on property owned or controlled by such organizations, the bill also explicitly ALLOWS a county to impose conditions to protect public health and safety.
    Not performing criminal background checks on the homeless who will be sheltered in the same building as a daycare facility (especially when SHARE’s own screening procedures have failed to turn up some sex offenders in the past ) is clearly a safety issue, and children are needlessly being put at risk and we are asking you to take action.”
    So their hands are NOT tied on safety issues. But please, don’t feel you need to take my word for it, the bill that was signed to law can be found here:
    http://apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/summary.aspx?bill=1956&year=2009

  • guest

    I wonder if daycare licensing agencies have rules about people living in the same space as a day care. Maybe someone should check. Bummer for the day care, of course…..

  • James

    I liked this thoughtful letter from a church elder at a church in Wedgewood/Meadowbrook. It respectfully considers the neighbors and other services that exist at this church.

    An excerpt:

    Despite the admirable and commendable objective of helping the less fortunate, I have come to the conclusion that we should not proceed with this effort because of the following:
    – It is not in keeping with the democratic principles of a free society;
    – It is wrong morally;
    – It is detrimental to the well being and longevity of the church; and
    – It may well adversely impact the Homeless by creating discontent for the Homeless with many people in the neighborhood.

    As you can see, he is a wise and thoughtful man who knows that a church is part of a broader community – not insular and acting w/o regard for its neighbors.

    The whole letter can be found here:
    http://www.meadowbrookneighbors.org/letters/powerful-letter-from-church-elder

  • P

    James, Nice find. Could you re-post on the latest blog entry so folks will see it there, too.

  • guest

    The letter noted that the Boys and Girls Club currently hosted by the church would have to leave if the church hosted a tent city, because the majority of parents would stop bringing their kids to activities.

    My takeaway from all this is that it is a very bad idea for a church to allow a homeless shelter if they are already hosting a kid’s group, daycare, or school. Especially if they have not thought through all the potential problems for their existing client.

  • frank

    The biggest concern, which hasn’t yet been addressed, is the fact that this decision by the church may very likely put the pre-school out of business. Where the pre-school has done a phenominal job in the great teaching staff and programs for the chiildren, if parents are concerend for their childrens safety, right or wrong, they will put their children into another school.

    We can all debate the pro/con, right or wrong but in the final analysis if the parents of these children remain concered Huckleberry Forest Preschool could loose their students and their business.

    In today’s world pre-schools provide an invaluable service to millions of families throughout every city/community in the US. There are truly not enough of them as it is. For this neighborhood in Wallingford to loose this pre-school will result in a loss to the families, the pre-school itself and the seven people they employ and the community.

    These are facts, not debateable issues, on the likely outcome of this move by the church for the school.

    I will be attending the meeting this evening and sincerely believe this should be high on the agenda and put in front of the city council, the church and any entity that has or will become engaged with this situation.

    My main concern, not unlike all, is for the school itself staying in business to continue to educate and nurture its young students.

  • E30 Memorial

    This thread is one of the reasons I have a problem with anonymous posters. Now someone on this thread is encouraging retribution to my home and family because I don’t think like they do?!!! There’s a lot of wrong thinking type of people in this world, so when an “Anonymous” person as in post #100 makes a sick encouragement publicly, that’s when threads like this one become dangerous. After all, accountability is what this whole thread has been about….right? More harm is done to the cause when this type of recklessness is posted.

    @J.
    As far as comparing the homeless to dogs, that is NOT what I was implying. I have way to much respect for the homeless. I’m saying these kind of accusations don’t help the cause either.

    Steve

  • J.

    Steve, You should lighten up a bit. The poster “anonymous” was poking fun at you (easy to do, I might add). S/he even said s/he *did not* was to crap in your yard, and asked you not to do the same to his/her. Stop being an alarmist. Geez… get a life.

  • C

    Steve (E30 Memorial),

    As an outside observer, I’d like to say that your “contributions” to this thread are derailing the conversation.

    Just to be clear, poop in the vicinity of the preschool (human or otherwise) is the least of our concerns — regardless of the source, it is actually very easy to clean up. Rather, most of us are concerned about something much more important. We are confused and concerned about the relationships/negotiations that have occurred between the church leadership and SHARE over the past several months and about the fact that the community has been intentionally excluded from these negotiations.

    Please do not trivialize or distort our concerns. I hope that no other readers get distracted from the conversation by your “clever” observation that human and canine feces are pretty similar.

    Frank, I’d like to acknowledge your point and say that it would be utterly heartbreaking if Huckleberry Forest closes — that possibility upsets me more than anything. My son attends the school, and it is very clear to me that the directors and teachers at the school do an amazing job of caring for and nurturing the kids. We will continue to attend the school whether or not SHARE is running its shelter upstairs or if the school is moved to another location in the city, though my hope is that lines of communication can be opened and healed to the point at which all parties can work together to help everyone, including the individuals in need of food and shelter.

    The last thing I’d like to say is that it seems that the school director has been put into a tremendously difficult position by all this, and I really wish that SHARE and the church leadership had been more considerate of her.

    Christine

  • Guest

    I am the woman who posted #93, whose preschool went through this in the fall of 2008. The school definitely took a huge hit financially during the entire time that there was an encampment in the parking lot, and I believe for about a year after that as well. Our family ended up pulling our child out of the school during this time, as a matter of fact, though the specific reasons were far more complicated than just this one issue. Our spot was not replaced for a very long time, from what I heard through the grapevine. It was not our intention to cause financial harm to the preschool, but we no longer felt that we could keep our child in that situation anymore.

    And though I don’t need to mention it, I do feel obligated to say that I am no stranger to homelessness, as I have worked with two family members, one a child, for over twenty years as they deal, unsuccessfully, with addiction and homelessness themselves. I have been in and out of countless ad hoc homeless shelters, SROs, weekly motels, squats, beach camps, and you-name-it places, helping out my loved ones when they were in trouble, or wanted to visit with their kid (whom I cared for for many years). Not to mention all the help we provided them by providing school costs, rehab costs, money during tough times, plane tickets, bail money, rent money, etc etc etc. My very strong belief is that the complex and rough issues that the chronically homeless face every day are suitable only for the adult world, and for adult intervention. Very young children and their families, like those at out former preschool, should never be unwillingly thrust into the middle without a say so or a voice, like we found ourselves back in 2008.

    I do know that the pastor of our host church was approached by SHARE members at the last minute, encouraged to make a quick decision, and also encouraged not to notify the community or the preschool ahead of time, either. I have been following both the tent encampments and the church shelter openings, and they have all been following this same pattern for at least two years. There is a definite pattern, and I am saddened to hear that SHARE now seems to be providing a “how-to” manual. They are convincing good-hearted pastors and their congregations to shut their hearts and close their ears to their own neighborhoods, preschools, and existing organizations.

    Shutting down real discussion, and not giving all interested parties a chance to be heard, has never, ever been a productive nor inclusive approach to problem solving. Our neighborhoods in Seattle have always tried to find a way to support the homeless far more than any other city I have lived in (which includes Austin, Santa Cruz, and San Francisco). It is a real disservice to our neighbors and preschool parents to shut them out. I know that what I heard over and over within our school community was that we would have been very supportive of a nearby location for the encampment, but not one where we had to directly walk through the campers while we had our very young children in tow. It was the mixing of the preschool directly into the housing option that caused the problem. We called it the “Boy Scout” test – many of us felt that there would be similar issues with any sort of long term housing arrangement set up in our parking lot. Though I will be the first to admit that I know enough about homeless encampments to be a trifle more worried about them than about scouts, both would definitely be an insurmountable issue for a preschool.

    I encourage the Gift of Grace community and pastor to ignore SHARE’s counseling for a moment, and give your preschool and your neighbors your true undivided attention. Have a little faith in your neighbors and their thoughts on this. Because I can guarantee that they will be the first ones to have to manage any problems that the shelter may, or may not, cause. They can also be the first ones to come through in a crisis as well (read the stories about the Maple Leaf shelter neighbors during the big snowstorm). Your congregation will just not be able to be onsite as often as these folks are. I’ve lived this, and it was not as rosy as SHARE would have you believe. Nor were the neighbors and the parents as hateful as they would have you believe, either. One can have a good and giving heart, and still be deeply concerned about the welfare of their own families.

  • J.

    Wow! Thanks for that wonderful post, Guest #112. As angry as this had made me, your note made my day a little brighter.

  • Cathy

    When and where is tonight’s meeting?

  • Anonymous

    Excerpt from mywallinford.com blog
    ——————
    Linda, who owns Irwin’s Cafe one block from the church, also spoke up in favor of the shelter. Her cafe is open when the shelter folks show up, and she employs teenage girls who she said were much more likely targets than the preschool students. “I came here with concerns about the guys, and I’m leaving here with my concerns answered,” she said. “I think it’s almost safer for our neighborhood that we have a more controlled environment. I feel safe and good that our neighborhood is reaching out.
    ——————

    I think I will take my business to another coffee shop that is concerned about the children (including my own). Interesting they did not have the homeless shelter at the church when her children were young and living next door the church (formerly Mrs Fetcher).

  • Anonymous

    Cathy: 6PM.

  • Mark

    As a Wallingford resident(I live right next to Stone Way, the street that killed 3 people in the last 5 years) who’s only a few short blocks away from a group home teaming with VERY mentally ill people who are free to walk about as they choose(none have yet to kill anyone in the neighborhood). I’m also the father of a 5 year-old girl who went to Wallingford Coop, who also hosted a homeless shelter(No problems there, either).

    I have to express my sincere dismay that so many of you, however well-intentioned, seem to be living under the misapprehension that you’re entitled to some level of uncompromising security that no city(that’s what we live in) can possibly provide you. It’s also a rather dismal thought that my fellow neighbors seem perfectly happy to scape-goat the homeless of Wallingford(there are many among us) by tarring every one of them with the “potential child molester” label and screaming “NOT IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD!”

    My brain cells also get a little strained reading some of these posts that espouse this rather ridiculous notion that SHARE and the church(and apparently anyone who would support it) are somehow being malicious and conniving, as though they’re reveling in the possibility of endangering your children and they’re going to stir up all this controversy to do so.

    However badly you may think this has been handled by any party concerned, we are talking about people who are simply trying to do some good in our – YOUR neighborhood. We shouldn’t have to pass an act of the Wallingford Congress to simply do good by our fellow man.

    Understand that the inherent dangers of living in an urban area don’t disappear because we ran the local homeless shelter out of the neighborhood church. The risk of being run down on 40th by somebody embroiled in a text message is astronomically greater than anything a hungry, sleep-deprived homeless person can bring.

  • iyqtoo

    @ Mark. You’ve completely missed the point of the discussion. Sometimes that happens in the middle of the night. This may be your perception of what neighborhood consensus might be, my own expectation might have been close to yours a week ago. But as it turns out we’re wrong and you have misrepresented the vast majority of these postings. If you’re interested, you might try again BEFORE last call.

  • Mark

    iyqtoo, you clearly didn’t understand my point. I won’t hold it against you.

  • #93 parent

    Wanting to have an open, transparent process when bringing in a city-funded social service to a neighborhood is not the same as being afraid of the homeless, Mark. They are two separate issues.

  • Mark

    #93 parent, Yes, I agree. I’m not equating them…anymore than I would equate being homeless with being a potential child molester. Nor am I vilifying anyone. Nor do I think that having concerns about the shelter makes you a heartless jerk. Nor am I making ad hominem attacks on the character or motives of any particular person who has concerns about the shelter.

    But, yes, I will criticize the content of some of these posts…particularly the ones that make ad hominem attacks on the character or motives of the people who are running/in-support-of the shelter.

    I’m also making a broader observation, and criticism, of the fact that when this predictable narrative of “homeless shelter vs. neighborhood” plays out every few months, the homeless in general DO get yoked with playing the part of the embodiment of all our worst fears(to the exclusion of all the other equally, if not more, ominous dangers and boogieman that we impose on ourselves by virtue of choosing to live in a city with a complicated culture). And many of the neighbors in this narrative, with their genuinely good intentions and concern for their children in tow, are unwittingly complicit in prioritizing a rather ephemeral sense of security over providing deserving people with access to food and a place to sleep.

  • #93 parent

    I have not found that to be the case here, Mark. The good folks of Wallingford have overwhelmingly stayed on the topic of wanting an open and transparent process when bringing a city-funded social service into a neighborhood. This particular scenario has been playing out in at least half a dozen other locations as well, leading many to believe that it is neither accidental nor likely to change without a citizen outcry.

    One of my biggest issues with this secretive approach is that it makes it that much harder to bring in other, more stable public services for the homeless. The SHARE shelters are, by all accounts, a band-aid, and the divisive tactics that they use to sneak a shelter into the neighborhood breeds a lot of distrust.

    I truly believe that a more open, inclusive approach would be a far better way to serve the long term needs of both the homeless, and to allow the varied communities of Seattle to show their generosity. The type of shelters best suited for neighborhoods may not be exactly what SHARE envisions or provides, but they may need to do some listening as well. If the city wants neighborhood support, they will need to gather neighborhood input. For crying out loud, we are the liberalist, hippiest-dippiest city north of Santa Cruz, and we even give them a run for their money. We can handle it, But only if the process is an open one.

    Oh, and one final comment. This is an issue very close to my own heart. My stepson is chronically homeless, as was his birth mother. They make use of shelters as well as a variety of other temporary living arrangements all over the country. I love and miss him dearly, and he always has a family he can call, but he chooses not to for many of the usual, and very sad, reasons. I know far more about the effects of homelessness of individuals and their families than I should. The personal is political.

  • Mark

    Those are some good thoughts, #93 parent! The best to you and your family!

  • Mark

    By the way, folks…there will be an open forum this Saturday morning at Mosaic coffee shop in the church behind Dick’s burgers: Oct 23rd, 10:30 AM – NOON.

    Bring your good behavior and mutual respect for you awesome neighbors!

    And muffins…BRING MUFFINS!

  • Cathy

    Mark, I think you mean September.
    Who is moderating?
    Is the pastor of GoG coming?

  • Muffin-Top

    Bring muffins for you, or for the homeless? Why are you expecting bad behavior and lack of respect?

    Mr Mark: (1) We are all looking for transparency and for the safety of our families. We chose to live in Wallingford hoping that it is a safe and healthy neighborhood. We make the neighborhood, and we will not tolerate hidden manipulative forces to destroy our community. (2) You claim that everybody should “provide deserving people with access to food and a place to sleep”. The second problem here is who is “deserving”. We have a right to ask for extensive information about this shelter, and for background checks, as well as clear proof of some kind of legal control over people who are going to spend the day walking around our streets.

    I understand your willingness to provide and to be charitable (1 out of 7 people in this country live in poverty), but we need to protect our families. There is a million ways to help the poor and the dispossessed, but letting obscure organizations open shelters for homeless people by our houses without any control is certainly not charity. It is actually supporting those who profit from the homeless.

    I grew up in a democratic European country with strong rehabilitation programs that focus on reinserting the marginalized into society. Even murderers and sexual offenders are potentially part of rehabilitation programs (impossible in this country). And it works most of the time! Now I have lived in 4 different U.S. states. And Wallingford, Seattle, is definitely one of the most sensitive, community-oriented places you can live in. However, it seems to me a bit naive to consent to populating your streets with homeless people with no control. This naivete is very particular to a certain kind of Northwestern culture, I have noticed. And in fact connect with a reactionary tendency to erase people’s histories and stories. “Let any homeless come for food and shelter. I do not care about their background as long as they do not hurt me”. But then, when something happens to our families, who will be responsible? Who will you blame when somebody who comes to the shelter assaults you or your partner, or your little girl?

    People in this blog are passionately defending their ideas about safety, but there is no disrespect or bad behavior. I do not understand why Mark is expecting trouble, and actually already stirring up the situation. Therefore, I will not bring muffins for you, Mark.

  • Cathy

    Mark, re 121.

    how do you determine “deserving”?
    where is this food you refer to?

    GoG has no food in their plan. Nor adequate bathroom facilities or use of shower or shampoo. The plan is a bad plan.

  • Wendy

    Cathy re. 125. There will be a moderator at the meeting and Pastor Fecher will be there but will not be moderating the meeting. There will be a meeting this Saturday and another one in October.

  • Mark

    Wow! Where shall I start?

    First: Cathy, thanks for the correction. Yes, the meeting is this Saturday, Sept. 18th. There’s a follow-up in October. The details are here: http://www.wallyhood.org/.

    Second, to everyone: I think a few of you may have misread my tone(something that doesn’t translate very well in this context), and I apologize if anything I’m saying is coming off as something less than well-meaning. Personally, I’m not a big fan of flippant sarcasm in these forums as it often gets misconstrued and starts a whole lot of useless, inflamed banter. I think we can give each other a little latitude.

    Third: Muffin-top(clever…really.), the muffin reference…I was being light-hearted, man! Ya know? Saturday morning? Coffee? Muffins? Anyway…

    Fourth: Cathy and Muffin, I’m not sure what you were reading into the word “deserving”, but in the interest of clarity, I define “deserving” in this context as anyone with a pulse who isn’t displaying qualities of being…undeserving? Really, there was no subtext to that. As there was no subtext to anything I said.

    Fourth(extended): also, Cathy, in referencing food in my prior comment, I was speaking extemporaneously. Food. No food. The point: the fundamentals of life. I wasn’t outlining the specifics of the plan. Sorry for the confusion.

    Anyway, folks, I think we’re basically on the same page that we’d like a safe neighborhood for ourselves and our children. I think we can agree on that.

    Now it’s supper time. I think I’ll have a muffin ;)

  • #93 parent

    Who specifically will be moderating, Wendy?

  • Woody Pidcock

    I will be moderating the first meeting to initiate open, transparent communication among Wallingford residents, Gift of Grace church members, SHARE people, and Huckleberry Forest Preschool parents this Saturday, September 18 at Mosaic Coffehouse (http://mosaiccoffeehouse.org/). The plan is to proceed with public conversations in a two-pronged way, 1) an immediate public forum to hear and understand concerns on 9/18, and 2) a forum planned further out that considers how those concerns are addressed after a reasonable period of time, like 6 weeks or so, which will be on 10/23 also at Mosaic Coffeehouse from 10:30-Noon. Both are open meetings. All are Welcome. No RSVP required.

    I am a long-term resident (23 years) of the Wallingford neighborhood and a recent regular attendee at Gift of Grace Lutheran Church (I will become a member this Sunday). My children went to the preschool at the United Methodist Church on 42nd street many years ago.

    As facilitator, I will do my best to insure all viewpoints are heard, and clarified when necessary, in a respectful and non-judgmental setting.

    -Woody

  • #93 parent

    Woody, were you one of the people who were involved in planning the shelter before it became known to the general public last week?

  • Woody Pidcock

    I was not part of the leadership team at Gift of Grace that negotiated the details with SHARE and communicated with Huckleberry Forest Preschool (the director, not the parents) regarding the church’s plans to proceed with this ministry to homeless men and women.

    I was a participant in the church meeting on August 8, where we went through a consensus process to identify and resolve issues related to becoming an indoor SHARE site. The preschool was one of our major concerns. I am very disappointed that the Director of Huckleberry Forest Preschool, Aida Mahmulyin, did not communicate the terms of the lease she signed in February with Gift of Grace pertaining to homeless persons in and around the church to the parents of children in the preschool. This notification is spelled out explicitly as a requirement in the lease. She also didn’t inform them after August 8, when she was notified in writing that we planned to be a SHARE host site with September 15 as the start date.

    I am angry (although probably not as angry as the parents) that the parents of children in the preschool did not learn about this until the neighborhood was informed a week before the opening. The tenants in the Gift of Grace building got over 1 month’s notice. I do not know why the Director of the preschool did not inform the parents.

    There has been a lot of misunderstanding and poor communication on this. I hope and pray we can speak and listen for the truth in conversations with each other in this messy situation. I am willing to answer questions of clarification on this blog and work through the difficult task of reestablishing trust in face to face meetings.

  • Cathy

    I am wondering is with your anger you can be an impartial moderator. We have already tasted th eexperience of havign the pastor be moderator and his ego and personal agenda overtook good moderation skills.
    I suggest that you ask another.

  • Wendy

    Cathy, I think it is almost impossible for people not to have some emotion going to this meeting. That said, I know that Woody has had professional experience as a moderator and knowing what I know about Woody I believe that he will remain impartial and professional.

  • Cathy

    thank you Wendy.
    I hav eposted over an dover alternative sites for boththe homeless site and the preschool.
    I hope we and the school look into those sites AND that the Wallingford Community can also begin some ‘drive’ or movement to ensure that the homeless who coem here have a bi tmore than a hard praying pew to sleep on and no food. Can we donate blankets, warm, clean coats and hats? Who will help spearhead this?

  • Wendy

    Cathy, Thank you for the donation offering! Will you be at the meeting on Saturday (tomorrow 10;30am)? The question of who will spearhead this might be able to be addressed then, in the meantime I’ll see if your question can be answered before then. I’m willing to step in and help spearhead this but there may be a mechanism set up for this already. Pastor Fecher has invited folks to contact him directly at [email protected] however due to the volume of emails he gets he may not be able to respond as quickly as some expect.

    I believe another item to be addressed at the meeting on Saturday is the formation of a team of people who will more or less monitor any impact the SHARE shelter is having on the Wallingford neighborhood.

  • Cathy

    I don’t know Weny.
    Last night with little notice I ran up to St. matthemws based on info that the mayor was meeting with the community about this. That was not exactly true. I changed my evening plans and drove in bad traffic for misinformation. The night before I went to Wall. Playfield in rain to not find a meeting. 2 of 2 meetings posted on here DID NOT EXIST for the PURPOSE listed.

    I have called all council people, some twice and made many excellent suggestions. You and others live much closer, own property and have kids in the school. Please carry the ball.
    It is also indeed unfortunate that none of the parties in any planning meetings decided to deal with the Wallingford Chamber or Council. They are a Wallingford central planning committee with longlasting and deep ties to business and the community.
    Why do I want to go to another meeting? I value my time and energy.

  • Wendy

    Cathy, Information on donating to SHARE is below:

    http://www.sharewheel.org/donations

    Thanks

  • Sharon

    Cathy – In response to your comment (#138). First of all, thanks for your comment on the post. The mayor’s meeting was part of a town hall series, and is listed as open to the community of the city of Seatte. I mentioned it on the post because I’ve been approached by so many folks saying that they contacted the mayor’s office. You are correct, however, that it was not scheduled in direct response to this issue, and if the post read as such, my apologies. Going forward, I will try to be much more clear on that point.

    You also mentioned a mistake in our reporting about a local meeting at Wallingford Playfield. For that, however, I won’t be able to take credit, as the blog did not report on it. Perhaps that information came from another source – potentially in the comments section or another media source?

    Thanks again for sharing your thoughts with the Wallyhood community and contributing to the dialogue.

  • Torn

    Cathy –

    I too left work early last night (I work on the faaaar-eastside and rarely get home before 7:30), I had typed up a prepared statement, and after 2 hours in traffic failed to make it to the meeting in time. That said, my husband and I have spent many hours on the phone with the city council’s office, the city, state representatives, and the mayor’s office, I just hope it’s getting somewhere.

    I am just saying that so you don’t feel like you are alone in carrying the ball! It’s affecting my work. We’re all trying to carry the ball, we just don’t know where to take it. I’m starting to get pretty depressed.

    This is the most frustrating “process” I’ve ever been a part of!

  • http://www.barbarasehr.com Barbara Sehr

    The Gift of Grace Web site has now been updated with the content of Pastor Fecher’s letter regarding the Mosaic meetings, as well as general information about the events of this week.
    Sorry that it took a while, this is a volunteer operation.
    Thanks,
    Barbara Sehr

  • Cathy

    well, last night’s meeting was really for the neighborhood there. I listened to the mayor talk and to him respond to 5 people.. 4 were about their sidewalk problem and 1 about the libraries. I did not feel that I shuold get in line to speak rather a parrent .. but in hesitation i lost to 12 or so who go tup first. I do not have a job and that is my main concern. I am impacted greatly by this because being at home during the day and using 45th and other neighborhood areas I SEE who is around and I am not always secure with whom had been walkign in our neighborhood or behind my apartment dumpster.

    Just this week I have seen 2 new folks with little resources on 45th and 2 in my area.

  • Mark

    Hey All,
    I’m not sure what everyone else’s impression was of the meeting at Mosaic this morning, but I thought it was pretty constructive overall. I think some folks probably left feeling a little empty handed as far as getting the answers they wanted, but everybody seemed ready to engage. My wife and I both enjoyed and appreciated the meeting and felt we learned a lot about everyone in the process. It was cathartic, really.

    Cathy and #93 Parent(I’m sorry…I forgot your name), I wanted to say hello and get your impressions, but other interactions intervened.

    By the way, I’ve reread my original post here with a cringe…I DID NOT communicate that well. Sorry. I ended up doing the exact thing I was criticizing.

    Anyone else have a feeling about the meeting?

  • Kari

    I was glad to be there and glad to meet so many neighbors. I find it so much better to talk in person than write/read a blog – especially when the topic is so intense. I am grateful to each and every one who came out and engaged in conversation and listening to each other. And many thanks to those who volunteered to serve the rest of us as a joint neighborhood/church/shelter taskforce (not sure what else to call it).

  • Dottie

    Is the homeless shelter now running at the Gift of Grace Lutheran Church?

  • cathy

    Likely so Dottie.
    There was a community meetign abou tit again in October. I would liek to see notes about this meeting somehere-Mosaic?.Where are they? Not on GoG website.

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