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        Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        Explore the lives of Spokane’s Homeless. Who are they? Where did they come from? Why are they homeless? Using personal stories and experiences, KSPS’s Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness in Spokane reveals the complexity of the problem of homelessness and the challenges involved in solving it, featuring the bold and sometimes unique efforts of the Spokane community to come together to try to solve homelessness by 2020.

        With these learning resources, students will define vocabulary words related to homelessness, gather information about the state of homelessness in America by analyzing infographics, and participate in a civic action project by using digital media tools to raise awareness of issues related to homelessness.

        Visit KSPS Education for additional educator resources.

        Introduction | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        Hidden in Plain Sight tells the personal stories of individuals experiencing homelessness in Spokane, Washington.

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        By the Numbers | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        In 2017, there were 1,100 homeless living on the streets of Spokane or in shelters, and many more “hidden homeless” living in cars, RVs, sheds, or doubling up with other families.

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        Strategic Plan | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        Spokane has a five year strategic plan to end homelessness in the city, focusing the city’s efforts on providing support services to the homeless, rather than policing them.

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        Community Court | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        The Community Court program in Spokane de-emphasizes short-term jail sentences for homeless individuals that commit crimes; instead, it provides defendants opportunities to resolve their problems during an intense six month supervision plan.

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        The SNAP Program | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        The SNAP program is a coordinated entry point for homeless individuals and couples without children in Spokane to receive an array of support services.

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        House of Charity | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        The House of Charity Emergency Shelter, open 24/7, offers homeless men and women and their pets a safe place to sleep and to recover from daily struggles.

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        Housing First | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        Housing First, under the leadership of Catholic Charities, is engaging in a long-term plan to end street homeless in Spokane by building permanent supportive housing for the homeless using federal tax credits.

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        Reducing Costs | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        Spokane Hot Spotters and the Catholic Charities Respite Program is helping to reduce the steep costs of homelessness in the city by providing the homeless with targeted, holistic, ongoing social services and medical care.

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        Women’s Shelters | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        Hope House and Women’s Hearth provide a safe haven and a sense of community for homeless women in Spokane.

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        Homeless Families | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        In 2017, 31 percent of the homeless in Spokane were children. Programs like Open Doors, operated by Family Promise, offer shelter and social services to homeless children and families year-round.

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        Homeless Students | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        In 2017, over 3,000 students in Spokane County were homeless. The Heart Program at Spokane Schools is focused on protecting the rights of students experiencing homelessness and helping them stay in school.

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        Connie’s Story: Domestic Violence | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        Domestic violence and drug addiction are leading causes of homelessness. Connie Osmun tells how both led to her experience of homelessness.

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        Sarah’s Story: Rising Up | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        Through the support she received at the Catholic Charities St. Margaret Shelter, Sarah McGrew, a mother of three, rises out of homelessness, fights drug addiction and starts a successful cleaning business.

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        Camille’s Story: Teen Homelessness | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        After running away from home, Camille becomes addicted to drugs and experiences homeless at 15. She soon gets support from the Crosswalk program, which provides homeless youth in Spokane with shelter, meals, and education services.

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        Derek and Guadalupe: Overcoming Addiction | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        The Union Gospel Mission’s two-year drug and alcohol recovery program are helping homeless individuals, such as Derek Mobley and Guadalupe Granados, overcome long-term addictions.

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        Layne’s Story: Incarceration and Homelessness | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        The formerly incarcerated often struggle to find work and housing, which often leads to chronic homelessness. Layne Pavey, a former convict, is working to improve this issue through the program she founded—Revive Entry—which rents rooms to the formerly incarcerated in Spokane.

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        Conclusion | Hidden in Plain Sight: Fighting Homelessness

        As evidenced in Spokane, fighting homelessness is a marathon not a sprint—it is a long-term endeavor to treat human beings like we expect all human beings to be treated.

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