Homelessness and Suicide by Hanging
September is Suicide Prevention Month-- Increasingly, many homeless people in Los Angeles County have hanged themselves in public — on a freeway off-ramp or sidewalk, in an alley, field or vacant lot. Increased Access to Mental Health Care and Suicide Prevention for Homeless People is needed. Read More
College Students: How to Survive Food Insecurity & Housing Insecurity during COVID19
A #RealCollege Guide for Students "BEYOND THE FOOD PANTRY:Surviving COVID-19" by the Hope Center offers practical advice on how to address common needs shared by college students who are experiencing resource insecurity or homelessness.
My Daughter And I Just Became ‘Unhoused’ During The COVID-19 Crisis
Unhoused. Our belongings are packed in a garage in central Virginia, and I no longer have employment. The question of where my daughter and I will lay our heads on any given week is a bit of an unknown. -- A teacher and single mom writes about what it means to join the ranks of a rising number of Americans who have lost their sense of security and belonging. Read MORE
OCLA receives Great NonProfits Seal!
It's official! Our Community LA is on the 2019 Great NonProfits Top-Rated List. We appreciate all of your support for our mission- using technology to connect LA's homeless and struggling to resources! Read what our supporters say about us here: https://greatnonprofits.org/org/our-children-la
2019 Directory of Services for LA's Homeless- Buy Your Copy Today!
OCLA is proud to make available the 2019 Directory of Services for Homeless Youth and Adults in Los Angeles. You can use the Directory for free on our website, or ask to use it in any LA City Public Library! Hard copies are available for purchase -buy one or more today! Email OCLA at firstname.lastname@example.org for details!
Mission Statement of OCLA
Our Community LA (OCLA), leverages technology to help youth, families and adults in need or experiencing homelessness easily connect to essential resources. Our goal is to empower and support the ability of all homeless and resource-insecure individuals, including youth and students under age 25, families, and seniors, to find the help they need to live a life free from poverty, abuse or neglect. By providing unique mobile and online tools, OCLA breaks information barriers and makes it easy for people to learn about the supportive services available to help them in their time of need. OCLA's free WIN What I Need mobile app represents a 21st century "hand up" to struggling individuals, enabling them to take steps towards making immediate and lasting positive change in their lives.
Our Community LA Feature
WIN: Meeting A Direct Service Need of LA’s Homeless
Mobile technology is the cornerstone of modern communication and information access. Virtually everyone trusts it, grandmothers use computers and cell phones are everywhere. But in an odd paradox, technology access is often seen as a luxury or status item. This mindset too often leads well-meaning folks to wonder suspiciously whether a poor or homeless person in possession of a cell phone is in fact really in need of supportive services. Such thinking also discounts the ability of mobile technology to offer innovative tools designed to support pathways out of poverty.
A smart phone in hand can offer the opportunity for human connectivity as well as a sense of security. Recognizing the importance of communication and knowledge access, the federal lifeline program, begun under the Bush Administration, has been providing homeless and low income individuals access to smart phones for over a decade. Millennials consider cell phones a necessity- one study reported that homeless teens consider smart phones as important as food. Today, the vast majority of the US’s homeless youth, families and adults under age 40 have smart phones.
It only makes sense to leverage trusted mobile technology to offer homeless individuals access to helpful information through free easy to use mobile app’s… like WIN.
Mobile applications are uniquely suited to meet a direct service. And they transform the outreach dynamic by empowering vulnerable students and families to search for and connect with service providers they choose any time they are ready. If you are homeless or living in your car, you can use free WiFi at your local library to download WIN to search for housing, respond to job searches or call a hotline. Couch-surfing college students may use it to locate free food, tutoring or school supplies. WIN offers free access to regional services, directions, helpful information and more.
Access to information and services are the first step out of poverty. The next time you see a destitute person with a cell phone, remind yourself that cell phones and mobile apps’s meet a direct service need of the homeless- access to information. Apps like WIN are a 21st century “Hand Up”.