BOISE, Idaho — Amid the intense heat, a nonprofit in Boise is helping unhoused individuals stay safe.
Jeannette Curtis, Outreach Program Director of CATCH said four full-time outreach staff members Monday through Friday's head out into the communities and make sure people experiencing homelessness have the resources to beat the heat.
“We know people who are living outside (are) much higher risk of heat-related illnesses," Curtis said. “We train our staff to look for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke to know what to do when they see those signs and to know where to tell people to go to cool off.”
Denice Wade is part of the outreach team and visits local parks, the greenbelt, and areas where people may be living in their cars to make sure they have the resources available to them. The team provides water bottles, sunscreen, and hand-out fliers on how to recognize signs of heat exhaustion.
“When we do outreach the main goal is to really connect with people and to be a presence in the community to let know people know what CATCH is and what we do. To let them know the resources in the community, to get them connected coordinated entry, to get them on the housing list, eligible housing services, and also to meet basic needs,” Wade said.
Wade said they started the outreach team in January of last year and she has been part of the team since June 2020.
“We can impact people’s lives one person at a time. We can’t solve the housing crisis and necessarily housed everybody but we can be someone to talk to that can listen to somebody and make that connection,” Wade said.
Curtis said the community can also be part of the effort.
“Would help us by dropping off water bottles, Gatorade, sunscreen, we’re looking for some extra coolers to pack around our drinks and ice. If anybody has those kinds of donations you can drop them off here at CATCH and Corpus Christi is always looking for similar donations as well,” Curtis said.
CATCH is opened from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. you can reach the center by calling (208) 246-8830.