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North Texas resources on homelessness
August 25, 2014 12:05 PM   Subscribe

Through a string of bad luck (losing my job, losing my health insurance, bit of a breakdown at the start of the summer), I'm looking at being homeless in a couple of days. There aren't many options out there for a single male. This is a last ditch effort to find resources in my area other than shelters.

I mentioned this in a comment a month back and got some very kind feedback, and for a while things were looking better. Things just haven't been panning out, however. This is partially due to not having access to the meds I need. I'm now 'in the system' with a state-funded mental healthcare provider, though my actual doctor's appointment isn't for another several weeks.

I've been picking up odd jobs here and there but my resources seem to have all run dry. I'm particularly interested if people have location-specific (DFW) experience with this. As I mentioned, as a single male there's not a lot of options that I've been able to uncover myself. I'm hoping that the doctor I've been assigned to will be able to help but I'm not holding my breath.

I'm looking for any leads other than 'pitch a tent' - it's hot as hell out and, if you know Dallas, there's not really anywhere in the area to do so. I don't have much of a support system in the area and I hate putting my issues out there like this but a resource is a resource is a resource. Thanks.
posted by item to Grab Bag (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
You might be able to do household work in exchange for a room. There are sometimes ads like that on Craigslist (here's an example, though this person prefers a female).
posted by three_red_balloons at 12:33 PM on August 25 [1 favorite]


Not a longterm solution, but Couchsurfing.org has a pretty big following in the DFW area; check the board/list re people who are willing to be last minute hosts.
posted by melissasaurus at 12:37 PM on August 25 [1 favorite]


http://www.citysquare.org/programs/housing/ probably has good info.
posted by tayknight at 12:39 PM on August 25


Have you looked into emergency rent assistance? A church, Salvation Army, or secular organization might be able to swing some money your way. Here are a few lists on housing assistance and shelter that might be useful: one, two, three, four, five, six.

It looks like Food Not Bombs is on the verge of starting back up in DFW -- their first meeting is in two weeks -- so you might try reaching out to them on Facebook to see if they have any resources on free/very cheap places to crash in the area, as well as where there's free/cheap food to be had. FNB folks are particularly resourceful when it comes to that kind of thing, ime. Here's a Thrillist article about Dallas restaurants offering free or deeply-discounted food every night of the week.

For last-minute employment, I'd recommend looking into pet-sitting, house-sitting, and applying with every single temp agency you can physically get to, including day labor gigs. Sometimes you have to sit outside the front door at an agency before they open to get the jump on that day's assignments, but they'll usually be able to give you at least a day of solid work in a warehouse or on an assembly line, etc. if you show up early. Troll Craigslist looking for positions that offer interviews with same-day start.

Good luck!
posted by divined by radio at 5:55 PM on August 25 [2 favorites]


Not location specific but qualifying for SNAP (formerly known as Food Stamps) will also give you the option of a free phone with 250 minutes a month.

My experience is that when you apply for SNAP they do everything to discourage you unless you claim that you are homeless. Claim that you are homeless whether that is the case or not.

Most importantly do not let pride stand in your way. A shelter is shelter.
posted by vapidave at 6:18 PM on August 25


Contact Jewish Family Services. You don't have to be Jewish. The link takes you to a page about the food pantry, but further down the page is this:

For those individuals who come to our Pantry, access to the food pantry Case Manager is provided. When an unmet need arises, we work in providing information and referrals as appropriate and also coordination of those needed services. “Wraparound Services” are provided to address basic needs essential to regaining self sufficiency.

And this:

Limited financial assistance can be provided to clients of JFS, when families or individuals find themselves in financial crisis after meeting qualifications. Some examples-- (bus passes, having disconnection notice on electricity, facing eviction from their apartment, or needing medication assistance)

Note the bit about medication assistance. Their main gig is actually mental health assistance/counseling.

I believe they may also have a Ft. Worth branch, although I'm not finding a web page. But the Dallas branch will surely be able to tell you if there is one.
posted by MexicanYenta at 10:40 PM on August 25


The Society of St. Vincent de Paul has this page, which isn't that easy to use, but I think if you plug in your local address and then scroll down, it will list all sorts of organizations in your area that provide help. Or just call their Help Line: (214) 520-0650 ext. 114
posted by MexicanYenta at 10:47 PM on August 25


thanks for the feedback everyone. I'm unfortunately not qualified for a lot of the services listed above, especially ones connected to government/state funding. I'll definitely be looking at the others quite seriously in the next few days - I'm out of a place to live in about 2 hours.
posted by item at 8:00 AM on August 28


item, if you have a chance to update, please do... I've been thinking about you and hoping you're OK.
posted by scody at 4:58 PM on September 3 [2 favorites]


Echoing scody, I'm also thinking about you and hoping you're ok.
posted by MexicanYenta at 7:37 AM on September 11


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