Volunteer efforts and donations contribute to Boise HQ for new homelessness program

By: Jordan Miller
10 July 2018

Every family and every person deserves a home. That is the core belief at CATCH, an Idaho nonprofit fighting to end homelessness in Idaho’s Treasure Valley.

Members of CTA Boise provided design expertise to CATCH to develop a space for the organization’s new program, Our Path Home. The program represents the culmination of collaborative efforts between dozens of Ada County social services to simplify the fragmented network of homelessness relief resources.

Wyatt Schroeder, Executive Director of CATCH, explained that the need for this consolidation is born from the exhausting experience of navigating these disparate services, especially during a period of extreme stress. In the past, people experiencing homelessness would often couch surf, relying on kindness and favors from family and friends. They might then turn to local police or their church, neither of which has much capacity to provide support beyond funneling them to overnight emergency shelters. Beyond that, their best bet for a more sustainable solution was to reach out to these disparate social services and try to get on as many waiting lists as possible and, well, hope for the best.

Our Path Home asks what would happen if the paradigm was shifted. What if there was just one door for people experiencing homelessness to enter instead of thirteen? What if this door led to a welcoming, calming space rather than a bleak and sterile office? What if this door led to friendly people with up-to-date information about all of the support available in the area? The team at Our Path Home believes this will revolutionize the journey of people experiencing homelessness, and ultimately move the needle toward ending homelessness in the Treasure Valley once and for all.

CTA, along with a number of other local organizations, pitched in to help make this door a reality. Lindsay Erb, who has volunteered with CATCH in the past, led the project’s design team, which included Josh Shiverick, Tom Dietrich, Tyler Victorino, and Natalie Miller. The project was, frankly, a miracle of personal connections and goodwill: past partners were contacted and cousins were called to gather materials, labor, and expertise to pull together a top-notch space funded almost entirely by kindness and a shared commitment to improve the area and put an end to homelessness.

Wyatt Shroeder, Executive Director of CATCH (second from left), with members of teams from Sletten Construction and CTA.

Thanks are extended to the following organizations and individuals, without whom this project wouldn’t be possible: City of Boise, The Whitney Foundation, Together Treasure Valley, Wells Fargo, Home Partnership Foundation, Laura Moore Cunningham, United Way of Treasure Valley, Mountain West Bank, U.S. HUD (Continuum of Care), Boise Regional REALTORS and Nation Association of REALTORS, Key Bank Foundation, Idaho Community Foundation, Bank of the Cascades Foundation (now First Interstate Bank Foundation), Many Voices Praying, Sletten Construction, Anderson Construction, and Business Interiors of Idaho.

At the moment, the space is partially furnished, awaiting materials like computers and artwork in order to make it operational and comfortable for staff and visitors. Though it doesn’t have a set date to open its doors, the team at Our Path Home is beginning the process of compiling data and hopes to grow toward full functionality this summer.

For more information about the services provided by Our Path Home, visit www.catchprogram.org/our-path-home.php.

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