Home vs. Homeless for the Holidays -- Eva's Village in Paterson, New Jersey, Announces Holiday Program to Provide Food, Shelter & Medical Treatment for the Addicted & Needy

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Eva's Village, (http://www.evasvillage.org), Paterson, NJ, announces four-mission plan to feed the hungry, shelter the homeless, cure the addicted and provide medical treatment to the homeless and working poor of New Jersey. Eva's Village is actively seeking donors, charitable contributions and volunteers to help them serve this deserving community in New Jersey.

homeless-shelter

My son and I moved into Eva's Village Transitional Apartments last year and we are so happy. I am so grateful to Eva's. My recovery started here but it doesn't end. I don't want to do anything to ruin this...

Eva's Village, (http://www.evasvillage.org), Paterson, NJ, announces four-mission plan to feed the hungry, shelter the homeless, cure the addicted and provide medical treatment to the homeless and working poor of New Jersey. Eva's Village is actively seeking donors, charitable contributions and volunteers to help them serve this deserving community in New Jersey.

Holiday lights burn in the windows. Children are snuggled warm in their beds. And the New Year holds great promise for the men, women, and children at Eva's Village homeless shelter who were formerly homeless and without hope.

Over the holidays, families gather in warmth and comfort to celebrate the joys of the season. Thousands of their neighbors, literally just minutes from their door, will be hungry, cold, and alone. They're not casualties of war, famine, or natural disasters, but victims of neglect and indifference right here in America.

Bordering beautiful, affluent New Jersey suburbs are people huddled on street corners and sleeping in alleys or on the steps of churches. Many of these unfortunate people are disabled veterans, the unemployed, and victims of domestic violence, while others suffer from mental illness or are addicted to drugs.

Even those with jobs - the "working poor" -- can find it impossible to put a roof over their families' heads despite working full time at minimum wage or less. The housing boom has been a windfall for some, but for many others, it places a decent place to live farther out of reach. The luckier ones find temporary shelter at places like Eva's Village in Paterson, NJ.

Eva's Village is not your typical food kitchen, homeless shelter, recovery center or medical clinic. It is all of these and more -- a unique social service program where even the most unfortunate are treated with dignity and "where hope begins" for people like Clara, who came to Eva's Village addicted to crack cocaine and pregnant. She thought she could do it all on her own until she ended up homeless and on welfare. Eva's Village Residential Recovery Centers for Women treated Clara's addiction with counseling, education, job training, 12-step programs and support for the transition from addiction to hope, employment and independence. Most important for Clara is that she did not need to give up her son to family or foster care.

Clara says, "My son and I moved into Eva's Village Transitional Apartments last year and we are so happy. I am so grateful to Eva's. My recovery started here but it doesn't end. I don't want to do anything to ruin this...".

Originally a New Jersey soup kitchen, Eva's Village was founded in 1982 by Msgr. Vincent E. Puma in response to the homeless problem in his Paterson, NJ parish. But Msgr. Puma soon realized that a soup kitchen was not enough. With the generous support of donors and private and government grants, Eva's has grown into a full-scale "village" spread over several city blocks with facilities to meet the needs of the homeless, addicted and poor.

Today, Eva's Village is one of the most respected anti-poverty programs in New Jersey, with many programs that strive to help residents achieve meaningful and productive lives:

Eva's Village Kitchen serves more than 240 meals daily to the homeless and approximately 1,000 meals daily when resident program meals are included.

Eva's Village Central Intake offers extensive case management for the poor and addicted.

Eva's Village Emergency Overnight Shelters for men and for women provide beds for chronically homeless men and women 18 years of age and older. Shelter clients receive food, shelter and clothing, plus assistance with progress toward independent living.

Eva's Village Shelter for Mothers and Children provides a safe and comfortable home for mothers over the age of 18 and up to 50 children who stay an average of four months in residence.

Eva's Village Transitional Apartments for Mothers and Children offers 6 two-bedroom apartments for families who need additional time and resources to move into their own apartment.

Eva's Village Men's Supportive Housing provides permanent affordable housing for formerly homeless men who have graduated from Eva's recovery.

Eva's Village Primary Care Clinic handles over 4,000 patient visits a year for medical, dental, and podiatric services to the homeless and working poor, largely provided through the generosity of volunteer physicians and dentists.

Eva's Village Residential Recovery Centers for Men and Women provide a three-phase treatment program usually lasting 9-12 months for those addicted to drugs or alcohol.

Eva's Village Intensive Outpatient Program offers counseling, group therapy, education, and aftercare based on the American Society of Addiction Medicine criteria, plus a full range of psychosocial services.

And the need is growing.

Eva's Village Director, Sister Gloria Perez, P.B.V.M. says, "At the end of the day I know we are doing good things but there is always so much more to do, and while the homeless and addicted are an ever present challenge, the numbers of the working poor, those with low-paying full time jobs, seem to increase every day."

Eva's Village is actively seeking donors and volunteers to help them serve the increasing numbers of the homeless, addicted and poor in New Jersey. As the holidays are here, they are very appreciative of all end of year giving for tax-deductions and of course for a Happy New Year in 2008. To donate to Eva's Village NJ Charity, and to find out about volunteer opportunities in New Jersey, or for more information, go to http://www.EvasVillage.org, call 973.523.6220, or write to: Sister Gloria Perez, Executive Director, Eva's Village, 393 Main Street, Paterson, NJ, 07501.

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