Paso Robles Rotary Club donates $2,500 to ECHO
The Paso Robles Rotary Club recently donated $2,500 to the local homeless shelter, ECHO. The El Camino Homeless Organization (ECHO) is one of the few non-profits addressing the needs of homeless individuals and families in North County. The need is great as local homelessness has increased 32-percent overall since the last census. Even more troubling is the increase of 37-percent in homeless families and 78% increase in homeless veterans over the same period.
Last year, ECHO provided 19,416 nights of stay, 52,934 meals, 3,698 showers, and had 112 “graduates” who transitioned to more permanent housing. And ECHO is about to become even more capable this month as it moves to provide 24/7 services that are particularly important to homeless families.
ECHO is led by President & CEO Wendy Lewis who addressed the club and received a $2,500 sponsorship check from Rotary Club President Nicolette Harley Barth, Ray & Pam Derby, and golf tournament chair Rick Goree. Rick noted that the Derby’s have been our title sponsor of the golf tournament for many years and its success provides the means for giving to many local charitable groups like ECHO that serve the community. The meeting was held last Thursday at the Paso Robles Inn Ballroom.
ECHO was started 18 years ago and has become a model of success for helping the homeless in the community. Its shelter program is somewhat unique as it provides a dedicated case manager who provides hands-on guidance, training, and financial literacy for every person and family staying at the shelter.
These services are essential in helping clients secure permanent housing within the 3-6 month shelter stay limit provided by ECHO. Wendy noted that ECHO could not be successful without the incredible efforts
of its 1500 volunteers and 6 full-time staff that provide these services
– From the Rotary Club newsletter by Bob Vilhauer