Innovative partnership helps more of Fremont’s homeless receive critical services
FREMONT, Calif. February 25, 2013 - Fremont Bank Foundation, has awarded Abode Services $25,000 for its HOPE Crisis Outreach Team (HCOT), an innovative partnership with Fremont’s Police Department and Human Services Division to care more effectively for the city’s homeless.
HCOT was formed last year to engage Fremont’s homeless population and improve coordination among agencies responsible for their well-being. The team consists of a full-time social worker and a peer counselor who collaborate with local law enforcement to connect individuals with critical health, social service and housing programs.
“This generous grant from Fremont Bank Foundation will support our ongoing partnership with local law enforcement to help homeless people access housing, health care, and other services,” said Louis Chicoine, Abode Services’ executive director. “The HOPE Crisis Outreach Team meets a critical need in our community, and we appreciate the foundation's commitment to keep it moving forward in service to Fremont’s most vulnerable residents.”
According to Chicoine, HCOT was created because the Fremont Police Department saw an opportunity to leverage their routine engagement with homeless individuals, who are otherwise difficult to identify, track and connect with much needed health and social service programs. When law enforcement personnel encounter the homeless in the course of their job, they can now submit pertinent information to HCOT, such as physical descriptions, behaviors and locations of those needing follow-up care. The team then initiates outreach and builds personal relationships with individuals in hopes of connecting them with long-term assistance, including permanent housing.
In the first seven months of operation, HCOT engaged nearly 100 individuals, successfully connecting many of them with mental and primary health care, shelter services, and permanent housing, among other programs.
“The HOPE Crisis Outreach Team is one of the most creative partnerships I’ve seen to care responsibly for the homeless in a community,” said Hattie Hyman Hughes, president of Fremont Bank Foundation. “Most of these individuals will not come to us for the help they need. We have to go to them, which is what the team does. The Foundation is proud to support this work and believes it serves as a model for other communities to follow,” she concluded.
About Fremont Bank
Fremont Bank (www.fremontbank.com) is a leading retail and commercial bank, California mortgage lender, award-winning top philanthropic business and consistently ranks in Bay Area News Group’s “Top Bay Area Workplaces.” Founded in 1964, Fremont Bank is one of the oldest independent family-owned and managed banks in the state and focuses on personalized service for clients. It has 18 branches across the counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, Santa Clara, San Francisco, and Monterey with loan production offices in Sacramento and Los Angeles counties. Find Fremont Bank on Facebook at www.fb.com/FremontBank and on Twitter at @FremontBank.