Encast and Lava Mae to Host “Pop-Up Care Village” for Austin’s Homeless at SXSW

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Austin Tech-for-Good Startup Partners with Nonprofit Innovator of Mobile Showers and Care Villages for the Homeless

In Good We Trust

"Encast's mission is to amplify giving and SXSW is the perfect opportunity to showcase what can happen when a community comes together to serve those experiencing homelessness." - Leo Ramirez, Jr., CEO, Encast

Contact: James C. Moore, Encast – 512.300.9232 / jim(at)encast(dot)gives   

Deborah Schneider, Lava Mae – 415.637.3686 / deborah(at)lavamae(dot)org

Creator of the WorkHERO charitable giving platform, Austin startup Encast (http://encast.gives) has partnered with nonprofit Lava Mae (http://www.lavamae.org) of San Francisco to create a Pop-Up Care Village during the SXSW Festival (https://www.sxsw.com) that delivers essential services for individuals experiencing homelessness.

On Saturday, March 11 from 10am to 2pm at 700 Red River Street in downtown Austin, Encast, Lava Mae and several Austin businesses, nonprofits and local volunteers will stage a Pop-Up Care Village to provide homeless guests with essential services, including mobile showers, food, haircuts, clothing, medical care and more. Event collaborators include Mitscoots Outfitters, Mission Accomplished, Mealshare, Beyond The Grade, Adomo Nail Bar, Help Portrait Austin, Art From the Streets, Central Texas Food Bank, Unilever and KIND Snacks.

The event uniquely enables homeless guests to easily access resources in a festive atmosphere featuring live music, arts, entertainment and social activities, all delivered with ”radical hospitality” – an unexpected level of care designed to help restore dignity, rekindle optimism, and fuel a sense of opportunity.

“Encast’s mission is to amplify giving and SXSW is the perfect opportunity to showcase what can happen when a community comes together to serve those experiencing homelessness,” said Leo Ramirez, Jr., CEO and Founder of Encast. “Piloting new programs like Pop-Up Care Villages in Austin plays a vital role in supporting our city’s efforts to alleviate homelessness, and Encast is delighted to partner with our collaborators to engage more businesses, nonprofits and individuals in giving back.”

Founded by Texan Doniece Sandoval, and widely known for its blue buses providing mobile showers and toilets on wheels for people moving through homelessness, Lava Mae piloted its Pop-Up Care Village program in 2016 to mobilize private sector, nonprofit and government partners together to bring more critical services to the street.

“Lava Mae is excited to bring our Pop-Up Care Village program to Austin – our first outside of San Francisco – and honored to partner with so many businesses, nonprofits and volunteers who share our commitment to bringing new innovations to better serve individuals moving through homelessness,” said Sandoval. “SXSW is an ideal setting to highlight creative new ways that for-profit and nonprofit sector partners can transform the way essential services are provided to our homeless neighbors and we hope it will inspire SXSW attendees and the broader Austin community to join us in this social movement.”

The city of Austin recently won a highly competitive $5.2 million-dollar grant from HUD to tackle youth homelessness and another $1.5 million from Bloomberg to tackle homelessness downtown. From 2015-2016, the homeless figure in the city increased from 1,832 to 2,197, a jump of 20 percent.

In addition to the March 11 Pop-Up Care Village, Ramirez will also moderate a SXSW panel, which will include Sandoval, to discuss turning social impact ideas and intentions into action. “Shut Up and Do Something” takes place on Sunday, March 12 from 3:30p to 4:30p at the J.W. Marriott, Rooms 201 and 202.

More information and how to take part in Austin’s March 11 Pop-Up Care Village is on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/events/735353616640243.

About: Encast offers a cloud-based service for increasing and managing charitable giving by companies, employees, and individuals of all ages and experiences. Its HERO platform, a Giving as a Service (GaaS™) solution, enables fee free donations, charitable recommendations, social impact analytics, and flexible corporate social responsibility campaigns.

About: Lava Mae is a San Francisco-based nonprofit that is disrupting the way Communities see and serve people moving through homelessness. Founded in San Francisco in 2013, Lava Mae began by converting public transportation buses into showers and toilets on wheels to deliver hygiene and rekindle dignity. Today, Lava Mae is taking “Radical Hospitality” to the street by bringing humanity, innovation, and collaboration to the way services are provided to those experiencing homelessness.

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James Moore
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