Homelessness in Summit County
By Lucy Hackett
Homelessness exists for many reasons. It is a result of trauma and crisis a person goes through such as poverty, domestic abuse, physical or developmental disabilities, alcohol and/or drug abuse, other addictions, chronic health conditions, HIV/AIDS, mental health problems, and loss of employment, job, housing, or family. Prior to coming to Haven of Rest Ministries, many people have rented temporary living spaces; stayed with a family or friend; lived in places not fit for human habitation such as a car, abandoned building, somewhere outside, in a tent; served a sentence in jail, prison, or juvenile detention facility; or came from a substance abuse treatment facility, detox center, or psychiatric facility.
In the last 2020 report from Continuum of Care, a total of 4,425 people were served in Summit County. Of this number, 1,000 were children. The newly homeless came to 71% and 10% were chronically homeless. A total of 89% were from Akron with 11% from surrounding communities. Hundreds of these people received Emergency Shelter at Haven of Rest Ministries. These and others received food assistance, clothing, and care through our Food Service and Clothing Distribution centers. Other Haven of Rest services include work therapy; nutrition, parenting, and other classes; counseling and case management; devotions and Chapel services; and savings, career and job planning, and transition into permanent housing.
People we serve are looking for a second chance as they escape from their trauma and crisis. Haven of Rest not only offers a place to meet their needs, but to find healing and purpose as each individual utilizes what the Mission has to offer. As the issues are addressed and dealt with, adults can find a new beginning as they re-enter the work force with the help of the Learning Center, case managers, and volunteers. They can leave here feeling better about themselves and with a deeper realization of Christ’s love for them.
Thank you for your support and may the Lord bless you in the days ahead. If you would like to find out some of the ways you can help or to come for a tour, please call the Mission at 330-535-1563.