Cold Weather Support
As our community starts to thaw and power returns, pipes are breaking, and they’ll continue to break as the weather warms up. Not sure what to do if that happens? Have questions about the citywide boil water notice, or where to get clean water, or where to find food? Check out this updating list from ECHO, and add new resources you know of that can help your neighbors:
Throughout the response to unprecedented cold weather event, including single-digit temperatures and several inches of snow, the City of Austin, Travis County, and local organizations have been partnering to provide shelter and other resources for people experiencing homelessness, as well as food, warm clothing, and other resources. If you’d like to help your unsheltered neighbors in this dangerous time, donate to one of the organizations below.
Donate items to help older adults experiencing homelessness transition to housing after winter storms
As temporary shelter services come to an end, many of our older adult neighbors seeking refuge from the winter storms are without permanent housing to return to. Family Eldercare is working to ensure those older adults experiencing homelessness are able to transition into long-term, stable housing as soon as possible. YOU can make a difference today by donating much needed household items from our Amazon Wishlist, and help ensure those most in need are able to thrive in comfort and safety, all year round.
Donate money to the #LoveThyNeighborTX Campaign to provide hotel rooms and supplies to people experiencing homelessness.
The Austin Area Urban League launched the #LoveThyNeighborTX campaign over the weekend to raise money for hotel rooms and necessary supplies to stay warm. Donate to the campaign here.
Donate coats and other cold weather supplies, or order items from an Amazon wish list to be distributed directly to people experiencing homelessness.
Sunrise Homeless Navigation Center has continued operating through the pandemic, distributing food, clothing, and other items to people experiencing homelessness. They also provide healthcare, mental health resources, housing assessments, and many other services to hundreds of people every weekday. Support their work by donating coats and other cold weather supplies, or by ordering items from their Amazon wish list to be shipped directly to the Center.
Create Winter Care Packages or Hygiene Kits; donate $27 for a Monthly Phone Plan
Integral Care has been supporting our neighbors experiencing homelessness for over 20 years, with a goal of moving people into housing as quickly as possible. Specialized teams build relationships with people living on the street in order to connect them to services that support their mental and physical health – providing direct care in the community and at their clinics. Services include medicine, counseling, case management, shelter and housing. Integral Care also provides basic needs such as shoes, clothing, food and water. You can help Integral Care support our neighbors experiencing homelessness. Create a Winter Care Package to help keep someone warm and safe. Create a Hygiene Kit that includes the essential items we all need for personal care. Donate $27 for a Monthly Phone Plan that keeps someone virtually connected to the care they need to rebuild their health and well-being.
Create Winter Care Kits or Snack Kits; collect and donate pantry items; order needed items from our Amazon wish list
Caritas of Austin’s mission is to prevent and end homelessness in Greater Austin. During times such as these, the people we serve are often at higher risk. While the pandemic continues, most in person volunteer opportunities are on hold but you can help meet the needs of the community we serve. Your compassionate gift of food, toiletries, or household items will provide someone with the essentials they need to stay safe, well, or housed at a crucial time. Snack kits are given to individuals experiencing homelessness that come to Caritas of Austin. Winter Care kits will help individuals in homelessness keep warm this winter. Food for the pantry will help to ensure that our housing clients have access to healthy groceries as they transition out of homelessness toward stability. Household items help our recently housed clients by providing the essential items we all need in our homes.
Create a Resiliency Kit for residents of the Esperanza Community
Many people show up to the Esperanza Community without the resources needed to survive here. Some have nothing more than the clothes on their back. We have designed these Resiliency Kits to provide people with basic needs so that they can get to work with TOOF building a healthier, more dignified life for themselves. Donating a Resiliency Kit to TOOF is a great way to make an impact by offering a strong start to a new resident at the Esperanza Community. You can order the items HERE and have them shipped directly to us, OR buy the items yourself and package them together for a fun volunteer opportunity at home!
Browse and donate what people experiencing homelessness need from our Amazon wish list; share your support for our How to House campaign
ECHO is making it easy for you to help providers get people experiencing homelessness the supplies they need. The wish list is constantly updated with input from our partners, so you know your donation fills a critical need. Order what you can, and it will be shipped directly to ECHO to distribute to our partners. You can also make a monetary donation, and all the funds we receive through this donation form go directly to purchasing additional supplies to keep people safe and healthy. In addition, please explore the How to House campaign, our new partnership with the Austin Justice Coalition, and share your support.
Every donation is a PIT (Pretty Important Thing) that really Counts!
PIT Count Volunteers do important work every year in January. The time and effort donated during those annual cold, dark nights supports the work of the many nonprofits working to end homelessness in our community. With no PIT count in 2021 for safety reasons, we are being given a chance to present an optional way to help this year. Our one request isn’t boots on the ground, or shopping and packing items—but it really is a Pretty Important Thing/PIT! Front Steps manages multiple programs to end homelessness, as well as the downtown shelter (the ARCH)—and we house hundreds of individuals a year from the shelter/streets. Our biggest need right now is rental assistance dollars to help clients secure and keep stable housing. If you would like to do something this year to mark your traditional PIT Count participation, helping with a donation to Front Steps would do the most good. It isn’t as righteous as counting in teams in the middle of the night, or as fun as assembling packs of things to give to clients, but our focus is a housing plan and ending homelessness—and rent and deposits and utilities require cash. Honestly, COVID closures have resulted in many of our recently housed clients losing all or part of their income…and no one wants the work of those clients and their case managers to be undone because someone is short on the rent. Whatever nonprofit/menu option you choose to commemorate the 2021 PIT Count moment, it will be put to good use. If you choose to donate to Front Steps to help pay the rent, we thank you on behalf of our clients and staff! Happy New Year, and thank you for being someone who has been part of the work of ending homelessness!
Create and Deliver an Activity Box
You can help the kids we serve at SAFE by providing boxes filled with supplies for crafts, sports, game nights, and movie nights. Click here to see your options and to sign up.