A HOPE is WNC’s only day center for people experiencing homelessness, providing basic services and engaging clients in moving out of homelessness and into permanent housing. A HOPE is also often the only place that people who camp go to for services, which makes it a powerful outreach tool in our community. Almost everyone who’s homeless comes through A HOPE, and it serves as a hub of information & connection to other community resources.
A HOPE is open until noon every day of the year.
When you’re homeless, where do you take showers? When you stay at overnight shelters, where do you store your stuff during the day? If you apply for a job & don’t have a phone, what callback number do you put on the application? Where can you get mail if you don’t have your own home address?
A HOPE is open from 7 a.m. to noon every weekday and 8 a.m. to noon on weekends to meet the basic needs of people experiencing homelessness in our community. About 200 people visit A HOPE each day, and when someone in our community becomes homeless, A HOPE is often the first stop on the journey back to permanent housing.
Meeting basic needs is a crucial service to the homeless community, but it’s more than that: it’s an engagement tool. By meeting some basic needs, A HOPE staff members are able to build relationships with people accessing services and connect them to community resources that will provide a solution to the crises they’re experiencing. A HOPE staff members hand out towels & soap for showers, check mail & pass on phone messages, and provide access to much-needed storage containers, but they also help clients fill out housing applications, get connected to mental health & substance abuse treatment, find medical care, complete disability applications, get food stamps, and find employment. A HOPE meets its clients where they are, no matter where that may be, and works with them to achieve housing & stability.
Homeward Bound’s mission is working with others to end the cycle of homelessness, and A HOPE participates in that mission by hosting community partners who outreach clients & provide on-site services & support. All Souls Counseling, WNC AIDS Project, Pisgah Legal Services, the Veterans Administration, and the Department of Social Services come to A HOPE weekly to connect with people who need their services.
How can YOU support A HOPE?
Donate! A HOPE always needs:
- Towels: We see almost 200 people each day, and many of them take showers here, so our towels wear out fast!
- Travel-Sized Toiletries: Ask your friends & family to collect travel-sized toiletries from hotels when they travel to share with our homeless friends at A HOPE when they need to shower.
- Socks & Underwear: Clothing is a well-met need in our community, but new items are hard to come by, especially when it comes to socks & underwear.
- Peanut butter, jelly, bread, & coffee: Like clothing, food is a well-met need in Asheville, so we don’t serve meals at A HOPE, but we do serve (lots of) coffee, and we keep pb & j around for folks who need a quick meal.
A HOPE volunteers work alongside staff to hand out toiletries, check mail, and respond to client requests. Start by coming to volunteer orientation on the 3rd Tuesday of the month at 5 p.m. Following that, you’ll receive an A HOPE training & get started. Email email@example.com to register for orientation or to get more info.
What’s it like to volunteer at A HOPE? Read one volunteer’s story to find out!