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Community Champions: Union Mission

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union mission(WTOC)
Updated: Sep. 9, 2020 at 3:57 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Union Mission provides shelter for the homeless, but they also try to educate the community about homelessness. WTOC Community Champions at Union Mission have brought back a program that gets information out to those who want to help fight that issue in Savannah.

Even on the days she works from home, Patricia Youngquist is present in the community. And is in the middle of one of the community’s biggest issues.

“What I’ve learned about homelessness is, it really takes education, people understanding.”

The executive director of Union Mission has re-introduced a program that helps provide that education, re-launching Union Mission’s Lunch and Learn meetings series virtually, via Zoom.

“We realize people are doing a lot of zooming, maybe getting a little zoomed out. But we still know there is a need for the education. People still want to get involved.”

Once a month, the WTOC Community Champions at Union Mission will host a 30 minute meeting with a local expert discussing issues related to homelessness such as domestic violence or hunger. The series started again on Tuesday with Sharon Hill, the Savannah-Chatham County Public School System’s advocate for homeless children outlining the impact in local schools.

“These are the numbers that we identified in 2019 - well, 2018-2019. And I wanted you to see it by grade. Most people are really shocked when they see the number of young students we identify.”

“I think her presentation was excellent. It was to the point. I’m sure everyone learned something, I certainly did.”

The free, public meetings are designed to get information out to organizations, agencies and individuals who can use it to help address homelessness in Savannah.

“We’re hoping that all of these issues that are important to the community, that people who have that particular interest will want to tune in and see maybe how COVID-19 has affected their particular interest.”

And that a virtual conversation can facilitate real help for homelessness in Savannah. The Lunch and Learn meetings will be offered on the second Tuesday of every month from 11:30 a.m. until noon. You can find a link to the Zoom meeting at https://www.unionmission.org/.

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