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QUICK CALL TO ACTION: Outreach Funding


Aug 24, 2023

Media Contact:

Jon DeCarmine, Executive Director
GRACE Marketplace
352-792-0800 x106

QUICK CALL TO ACTION: Outreach Funding

Save street outreach in less than two minutes!

On Monday, August 28, the City and County Commissions will meet jointly to discuss funding for homeless programs. As of today, we have no funding to continue our street outreach program, and we’ve had to eliminate 10 shelter beds due to reduced funding in our shelter. 

Please take a quick moment between now and Monday afternoon to email BOTH and to let them know you support GRACE, and you support full funding for GRACE. Please use a clear subject line like “Support GRACE street outreach!” 

You can use any of the following talking points in your message: 

  • Street outreach saves lives. The outreach team gives condoms to sex workers, needles to addicts, food and medications to the elderly, and bus tickets to help people who are stranded here get back to their own communities. We give out cold drinks on hot days, and warm food on cold ones. We are a community harm reduction program that has had unprecedented success.

  • Cutting outreach will save $350,000, but if outreach is cut, the community will lose much, much more. If outreach is cut, we will, in many ways, lose the heart of this city, creating a situation in which our only available response to human suffering is the threat of arrest. 

  • This team, in two years, has housed 248 people directly off the streets. They have taken over 200 referrals from law enforcement, business owners, and local government.

  • There is perhaps no area that will have an immediately bigger impact on the quality of life - for housed and unhoused people alike - in our community than eliminating shelter beds and the street outreach program. Homelessness is going up. It’s more important than ever to ensure we rehouse people quickly before their problems get worse (and harder to solve). 

Please email the Commissions now letting them know you support full funding for GRACE’s shelter and street outreach programs, and share this request with your social networks! When the City Commission saw the outpouring of support from hundreds of you in June, we were able to restore $600,000 in budget cuts. With this last push, we can make sure our community is the kind of place that, at minimum, has a safety net for our most vulnerable neighbors! 

With gratitude, 

Jon DeCarmine, Executive Director

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