Helping the Ones Who Need It the Most
Doorways Home is Texarkana's Coordinated Entry system. The office is located at
902 W. 12th St., Texarkana, Texas.
The Doorways Home Project began in 2011 as a way to promote awareness regarding homelessness in Texarkana and raise funds to end it.
Our “Doorways Home” project is designed to assist those homeless overtaken by circumstances in putting their lives back together. We are hoping our work can have a significant impact and develop a pathway so that those needing a helping hand will be able to put their lives back together and find their own “doorway home”.
TXKHC has partnered with local artists, passionate citizens, and philanthropic business leaders to aid us in our quest to shine a spotlight on this crisis by taking doors and 1950's era medicine cabinets from the Housing Authority of Texarkana Texas’ Griff King Courts demolition and transforming them into works of art, which will be auctioned off to raise funds for the Homeless Coalition.
TEXARKANA POINT-IN-TIME HOMELESS COUNT
One of the main initiatives the coalition leads is the annual point-in-time (PIT) homeless population count. This data collection and analysis is important for estimating the number of homeless in our community and thus the need for services.
In addition, every year for grant purposes HUD requires all Homeless Coalitions to collect data on homelessness during the last week in January.
The Texarkana Homeless Coalition is assisted each year by the statewide Texas Homeless Network which annually assists communities with their Point-in-Time homeless survey preparation and data analysis.
BRIDGE CITY ANNUAL FUNDRAISER
Recently, the coalition began a new fundraiser called the Bridge City Project with the challenge to community members and leaders to spend the night in a "homeless" cardboard box. The first event was very successful raising over $10,000!
All funds raised are used by the TXKHC to fund homeless and transitional support activities in our area. Come join us for these fun and festive events - We hope to see you there!
PUBLIC RELATIONS PROGRAM
The coalition promotes homeless issues through local newspaper articles, radio and speaking engagements. In June 2012, the coalition distributed 40 copies of the book "The Same Kind of Different as Me" to all local public libraries including local schools. The book tells the true story of an art dealer and a homeless man in Ft. Worth, Texas and how their lives intertwine after the untimely death of the art dealer’s wife. Listed on numerous best seller lists it is definitely worth a read…so go check it out!
BICYCLE SHARE PROGRAM
In October 2012, the Texarkana Homeless Coalition began a bicycle share program to increase our homeless population mobility. The coalition purchased 6 bicycles originally with 4 for short-term use and 2 for long-term use. The program saw immediate success stories with two residents of Randy Sams' Outreach Shelter using the bicycles to secure transportation for employment. Soon they were able to use their first paycheck to purchase bicycles of their own!
HOMELESS RESOURCE DAY
The purpose of the Texarkana Homeless Resource Day was to provide resources to anyone near or experiencing homelessness. These resources would include agencies or services that would be a challenge for them to obtain. There is a three step criteria to provide success for the Homeless Resource Day. Understanding that Homelessness can not be cured and that not everyone that needs these services will not obtain them is the first step to success. The second step is to find individuals and providers that
have a servant's heart and will work in the same environment and close to the homeless. The last step and key to success for the Homeless Resource Day is knowing that if one person or family is helped, that is someone off the streets and the day was a success.
CARE BOUND PROGRAM
The Home Bound Program is designed to aid homeless and low-income individuals in relocating for reasons such as reconnecting to family members in another area, and/or to the most appropriate services based on their personal needs as well as recommendations from partnering agencies.
The Texarkana Homeless Coalition will award two $1,200 scholarships per semester Applicant must apply for initial semester and then submit transcripts at the end of the first semester to be considered for further funding. Upon receiving the scholarship, the Texarkana Homeless Coalition will give the money directly to the bursar office at the college or university. Awardees will be offered the opportunity to share their back to school experience at the annual Bridge City Chili cook off (not required). You can download the application here.
Join community members in an experimental learning model designed to simulate common, everyday experiences among people living in poverty. This simulation will also showcase community resources for people with low incomes in Miller and Bowie Counties. This unique tool educates everyone, from policymakers to community leaders, about the day-to-day realities of life with a shortage of money and an abundance of stress. According to the U.S. Bureau of Census, in 2021, over 15,000 Bowie County residents and over 8,000 Miller County residents live with an income below the poverty level; that’s almost 20% of the county’s population. Many continue to struggle with bill payments and unforeseen tragedies, all while dealing with growing inflation and increasingly tight budgets. However, for others the experience of poverty is far removed and are unaware of this situation. The goal of this simulation is to turn misconceptions about life in poverty into understanding and awareness.
Chair of the Texarkana Homeless Coalition Vashil Fernandez and Communities Unlimited Community Facilitator Deanna O’Malley encourage the community and its leaders to join them in this educational exercise. “The poverty simulation exercise will enable participants to understand poverty from a variety of angles and recognize the potential for change and inspire action within the community”, said Fernandez. “We believe in building relationships and working with communities,” said O’Malley. “We want to connect those facing poverty with solutions that are sustainable and that goal starts with educating individuals with the resources to help them face these challenges.” Some scenarios of the simulation exercise include, but are not limited to:
A single parent with limited resources and no transportation must find a way to get to work and get their child to daycare and/or school.
An elderly person must find a way to pay for both utilities and medication.
A young adult must care for siblings while their parents are incarcerated.
An elderly couple must raise their grandchildren and deal with their own health and employment issues.