Last month, Sika was a project partner for a one-day event focused on finding a compassionate approach for supporting both our homeless citizens and our natural areas. Over 90 regional natural resource managers, social workers, and citizen advocates attended the workshop put on by Street Roots, PSU’s Trauma Informed Oregon, Multnomah County, Right 2 Survive, and Bonneville Environmental Foundation.
With the lack of affordable housing and access to services becoming more prevalent, many of the unhoused are seeking shelter in natural areas. With a focus on this issue, the workshop included an overview of the issues affecting the homeless, a high-level training by Trauma Informed Oregon, practical engagement strategies for natural resource professionals, and out-of-the-box brainstorming on how best to respond to this reality.
Since the event, Street Roots has posted an informative article, “Portland area advocates, park workers seek solutions to illegal camping,” and Kathleen Guillozet from Bonneville Environmental Foundation authored a blog post, “Houselessness in Natural Areas: Conservation and social service professionals come together for a compassionate approach.” Both pieces share more detail about the day and key outcomes ... definitely worth a read!