Our Social Services team of professionals provide guests at our kitchen with information and referrals to other support agencies to help address their challenges. Our services and partnerships provide with housing assistance, medical services, and counseling. We have also developed on-site services including health and vision screenings, flu shots and HIV/AIDS prevention and testing.
The HEART TEAM service delivery model is based on recommendations incorporated in the Middlesex County Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness.
Services are non-facility, interventions aimed at engaging homeless people living in Middlesex County who have been unable or unwilling to access support from traditional service settings and providers.
The project was launched in the summer of 2012 with start- up funding from the Middlesex County Homeless Trust Fund and has been supported since 2013 by the Rutgers Community Health Foundation and general donations to Elijah’s Promise.
Over the last year, the HEART Team has engaged dozens of homeless individuals in the field and successfully connected them with comprehensive services to ensure their long-term success.
Through our deployment of a mobile outreach team making regularly scheduled stops throughout Middlesex County – in a van fully stocked with food, clothing, blankets, hygiene items, and information – case managers and peer outreach workers seek out the chronically homeless on the streets, under bridges, living along the Raritan River, or in other yet undiscovered locations.
Utilizing engagement strategies that are non-threatening and non-judgmental, HEART staff work to establish a trusting relationship with homeless individuals, many of whom struggle with mental illness and/or substance abuse, with the ultimate goal of moving them off the streets and into stable housing.
Our goal is to empower people to begin addressing the complex issues at the root of their personal struggles.
Our Community Soup Kitchen has historically functioned as a refuge for the homeless during harsh winter nights.
In previous years, when the temperature is below freezing and/or snowing outside, we have opened the doors to our Community Kitchen as a warming center for guests to spend the night through our “Code Blue” Program.
This year, we have coordinated to connect our guests with improved and expanded warming centers in collaboration with The City of New Brunswick.
Last winter, Code Blue was enacted 14 times with an average of 40 guests per night at the Community Soup Kitchen. This year we expect to be able to better serve the needs of our clients and are dedicated to assisting in New Brunswick’s city-wide effort to provide warm housing for homeless individuals, especially during times of life-threatening cold weather.