Edmonds Cafe collects supplies for emergency shelter
The Louvre CafÃ© in downtown Edmonds is holding its fourth consecutive sourcing drive for Pathways for Women of the YWCA, a non-profit organization that provides emergency shelter for single adult women and mothers with young children during 45 days. Some of the supplies the shelter needs include personal care and cleaning supplies, hypoallergenic bedding, and cooking utensils.
While cafe owner Haifa Alhussieni intended to end the sourcing campaign on December 23, she will likely extend it until the end of this year.
âThere will always be someone who comes late, and I will take them,â she said.
In 2017, regular customer and resident of Edmonds, Gina Pajoman, asked Alhussieni what she thought of organizing such a reader. âIf it works, it’s amazing, and if it doesn’t work, we won’t do it again,â Alhussieni replied.
Last year, CafÃ© Louvre’s sourcing campaign received enough donations to fill almost half of the cafÃ© just before Christmas.
âI like to help people, and some people have a desire to serve others,â said Alhussieni, a resident of Lynnwood. âIf my competitor wants me to train one of his baristas, I’ll train him. “
Snohomish County Social Services reported that there are 673 homeless people in the county and 459 people are in temporary homes or in transitional housing.
As part of the YWCA in Snohomish and King Counties, Pathways for Women has 22 locations with a total of 900 housing units – with 13 emergency shelters and five permanent units in Snohomish County alone. By 2020, the Snohomish County YWCA had served 120 women and children.
Launched in 1976 as World for Women in Edmonds to provide emergency shelter, the nonprofit changed its name to Pathways for Women in the mid-1980s, according to Annalee Schafranek, director of marketing and writing at the YWCA Seattle.
In 1995, Pathways for Women became part of YWCA, which expanded its presence in Snohomish County.
âWe help our clients understand how to move from emergency housing to permanent housing. We provide mental health services, addiction counseling, health and safety, and economic advancement, âSchafranek said.
The YWCA and Pathways for Women continued their work throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and never closed their doors.
âWe are seen as an essential business,â Schafranek said. âWe have seen an increase in the need for services due to the economic impact of COVID-19. We have people in the community who are struggling to pay their rent or who have lost their jobs. The moratorium on evictions has certainly contributed to this in terms of not increasing our homelessness crisis during a pandemic. “
The CafÃ© Louvre supply order has a list of items that are attached to the Christmas balls at the counter. Those who wish to donate can pick up one of the tags and can drop off donations near the Christmas tree in the cafe during opening hours.
âMonetary donations to Pathways for Women and any fundraising would be helpful,â Alhussieni said. “If I can make a difference in someone’s life, it’s amazing.”
– By Nick Ng