What We Do
As the Shawnee Homeless Outreach Program (S.H.O.P.), we recognize that people in our community are in need of assistance and we truly believe that our city can only be as healthy as our most vulnerable citizens. Our program has four main goals that we follow in order to overcome homelessness in Shawnee. These goals include:
- Identifying individuals experiencing homelessness
- Building relationships
- Ascertaining immediate needs
- Entering individuals into a computer system that allows us to continue serving them.
Sanitation and Hygiene
Sanitation and hygiene are two overlooked, yet vital aspects of conquering homelessness. In order to address these needs, we have placed five porta-potties around the city, rented a shower trailer, and provide a laundry service to assist the people in our community.
In Shawnee, it is very common to see homeless people sitting outside the library and other businesses nearby. While looking
into the issue, we found that many people stay in this area because it has been one of the only public restrooms nearby. In order
to resolve this issue, we have placed five porta-potties at three sites in town. This has not only provided individuals experiencing
homelessness with a place to fulfill their basic human needs. It has also helped our local businesses by decreasing traffic outside
of their windows and helps to keep our city cleaner.
With help from Generations Church and Suds Bucket, we have been able to coordinate a laundry service for our homeless
populations. After dirty clothes are dropped of on Wednesday, they are taken to Suds Bucket to be washed. The clothes are
brought back on Friday for the individuals to come pick them up.
We currently have a 24 foot, three-stall shower trailer located at Shawnee Rescue Mission. The trailer is operated by our
interns and volunteers three days a week. During this time, people are invited to come take a warm shower with soap, shampoo,
and conditioner provided. We also provide a clean pair of socks and underwear as well as deodorant, shaving supplies,
toothbrushes, feminine products, and other hygiene-related items. While the shower trailer has helped to improve health,
sanitation, and hygiene, it has also served as a way to boost confidence and allow our homeless citizens to feel like actual people
In addition to meeting sanitation and hygiene needs, we have many other programs to help clients obtain clothing ID Cards, and other resources to assist people in escaping or avoiding homelessness.
No Wrong Door
The No Wrong Door program is designed as a foundation for the rest of our services. The goal of this program is to create a
united system to address homelessness. Shawnee has a large number of churches, groups, and organizations that want to help,
but may not know the best way or have the best resources to do so effectively. With the No Wrong Door program, a person
facing homelessness will receive the same screening and and access to services whether they enter the system at our office, a
church, or the police station. Creating a united system helps to ensure consistency and that nobody will fall through the cracks.
In order to apply for a job, obtain housing, and get access to various services, everyone must have a valid ID. With our Identity
Services Program, we are able to help clients obtain birth certificates, social security cards, and ID/Driver's License. After the
individual gets a valid ID, they are able to take the necessary steps to escape homelessness.
Back to Work
In order to obtain and hold a job, an individual must have appropriate clothing for work. Our Back to Work program provides
work clothes for those who recently got a job.
Due to Shawnee's location, it is not uncommon for some individuals to become stranded here. The Homeward Bound program
helps people stranded in Shawnee return home where they have support and resources, and ultimately keeps them out of the
Homelessness in Shawnee Roundtable
This group is comprised of organizations that serve the homeless population. The goal is to harness the collective power of these organizations and create a coordinated response to homelessness. This helps decrease redundant services and is a more effective way to combat homelessness. The group is comprised of over 30 organizations and meets monthly, discussing individual cases in order to find solutions, and identifying and filling holes in the system. These groups are the backbone of the homeless program, and include:
The United Presbyterian Church Community Market C3 Church
Free Spirit Hair Design Let's Talk Socks Shawnee Rescue Mission
Gateway to Prevention Nana's Answered Prayers COCAA
Wesley United Methodist Church Community Health Center Legacy Parenting Center
Emmanuel Episcopal Church St Paul's United Methodist Church Generations Church
Redeemer Lutheran Church Evangelistic Center University Baptist Church
Youth & Family Resource Center Shawnee Bridges Shawnee Police Department
Altruistic Farmstead Friends Feast Fairview Baptist Church
Frontline Church DHS Salvation Army
Restoration Pentecostal Church Pott. Lincoln Baptist Association SSM Health
Oklahoma Christian University J & Co. Hair Studio