Last Monday evening’s event, called Let’s Talk About Homelessness, was amazing! There were church members, school parents and members of the wider community there. Our hearts were touched, and all of us learned much more about how to reach out to those experiencing homelessness and also how we can help address the profound need for more housing.
The next morning, speaker Angela Sanchez, children’s book author and someone with lived experiences of homelessness herself as a child, spent some time in St. James’ classrooms with the students.
Great insights, great attendance, and great collaboration of co-hosts St. James’ Church and School enlivened the Stories from the Frontline event spotlighting the new “Understanding Homelessness in Our Community” curriculum developed by school faculty and advocate-author Angela Sanchez, herself a UCLA graduate who grew up experiencing homelessness.
Emcee Ashley Samuels, 6th-grade teacher and assistant director of Community Service Learning; Peter Reinke, head of school; and the Rev. Dr. Kate Cress, rector. Dr. Marilyn Wells, co-creator of Stories from the Frontline, moderated a panel, and other speakers included poet Michael Nelder; advocate Marlon Derek Pryor; United Way’s Tommy Newman; Amy Perkins, Mayor Garcetti’s director of interim housing strategies; and Rob Krueger, 5th-grade teacher at St. James’ School.
This new curriculum focuses on helping students develop a realistic and contextual understanding of neighbors experiencing homelessness.
Stories from the Frontline is an initiative of the John and Marilyn Wells Family Foundation. For more information, visit Stories from the Frontline.