Update: Since The New Hope Resource Center opened,
The Hangout is no longer in service!
A common image of homelessness is a shivering person in too few layers for cold or wet weather. Winter can be relentless, and ministries like Freezing Nights and hot meal and warm clothing outlets are Godsends. But what’s sometimes overlooked is that homeless folks are still unsheltered come summer, often with even fewer resources.
In Summer 2010, Freezing Nights volunteers from FCC Puyallup and other churches dreamed of a summer drop-in center where homeless adults could not only get out of the elements, but simply hang out, rest, or enjoy a snack with other people. The idea took off, and The Hangout opened three afternoons a week during summer.
In Summer 2012, a short two years later, 970 cumulative guests visited The Hangout, and volunteers from eight churches helped to run the ministry. In 2013, over 1300 cumulative guests were welcomed to the The Hangout.
The Hangout was held at FCC Puyallup with several other churches pitching in to help staff, donate supplies, and provide food, transportation, job application and résumé assistance, housing and other resources.
Update! In 2014, churches and community homelessness advocates banded together to open a year-round center for the unsheltered. Check out the New Hope website here to learn more.