Service organizations gather at the City of St. Joseph Health Department to discuss their contributions to the Urban Mission Project. The project will target the homeless population surrounding the Crossing shelter.

Service agencies in St. Joseph met on Thursday to discuss the Urban Mission Project and how more organizations can contribute to the cause.

The Urban Mission Project is launching on Oct. 1 to focus on the homeless population near the Crossing shelter.

The project has multiple funded partners, including the Crossing, Community Action Partnership of Greater St. Joseph, Pivotal Point Transitional Housing and the St. Joseph Police Department.

In order for the project to create the best outcome possible, they need other agencies to help out.

Debra Bradley, St. Joseph health director, said she was happy with the turnout and what every agency brings to the project.

“It’s good to be reminded, and I learned about some organizations some more and what they can do,” Bradley said.

The meeting included representatives from InterServ, Northwest Health Services, United Way, Rogers Pharmacy, Social Welfare Board, Second Harvest Community Food Bank, The Center, Salvation Army, Missouri Western State University, YWCA, Family Guidance Center for Behavioral Healthcare and Midland Empire Resources for Independent Living. There are other agencies, including St. Kolbe-Puckett Center for Healing, Catholic Charities and Buchanan County EMS that plan to contribute as well.

Bradley plans to have more meetings with these agencies to keep up on the progress and continue to figure out new ways to help the homeless population.

“These organizations aren’t funded through the project, but they’ll still serve the people that the urban mission is serving,” Bradley said.

Every organization was able to offer a variety of resources that will be offered to homeless individuals. The Salvation Army said they will be opening their 47-bed family shelter in the middle of October to provide more space for people in St. Joseph.

Bradley is hoping that once the project starts they’ll have more individuals come through the Crossing and then they’ll be able to move them out of a homeless lifestyle.

“We hope it brings more people to the shelter so everyone can get the help that they need,” Bradley said.

Once the project is launched the organizations estimate it will be up to three years until their goals are met.

Bailey Ketcham can be reached


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