The goal of this event, as stated by Isaac Hunt, GVI/S.A.V.E. Community Liaison, was “to provide residents who reside in specific apartment complexes with the opportunity to explore and sign up for community resources from the comfort of their own back yard.” Goodwill opened the event to local community members and organizations so that they could network and share resources with LaSalle Homes residents.
From noon to 3:30 PM, residents were able to interact with vendors and look for job opportunities and community resources on the spot. In attendance were South Bend Mayor James Mueller, Director of Community Outreach Office of the Mayor Shalon Davis, S.A.V.E. Director Canneth Lee, and the CEO of Goodwill of Michiana Inc. Debie Coble.
Vendors in attendance included, but were not limited to, Goodwill, Bendable, US Army, Clay Church Mobile Food Pantry, Heartland Hospice, Lake City Bank, Bowen Center, Family Justice Center, Oak Street Health, Nurse-Family Partnership, South Bend Police, and Work One.
The Stand Against Violence Everyday, or S.A.V.E., program was designed as a proactive extension of the Group Violence Intervention Program. A team of outreach workers promote nonviolence by deescalating group-based conflicts, and work on the streets to build relationships in the community. S.A.V.E. also runs programs at the local schools to foster a culture of nonviolent conflict resolution.
A huge thank you to Sharon Vaughn for her efforts in helping to bring about this event! Sharon is a Service Coordinator in the multihousing division of Bradley Company and is passionate about helping these community members get in contact with resources and/or opportunities. This event was a first of its kind, and we look forward to seeing more like it in the future!