Grateful for an Opportunity to “better himself.” Read Sam’s Story Here

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Sam in the MCC Computer Lab!

Thank you donors and supporters: you enable the Millionair Club Charity to run a supportive employment program with many services and one convenient location. You help people who are homeless become job ready. People just like Sam…

Sam was homeless when he arrived at the Millionair Club Charity (MCC).  He had tried to find work through other agencies but didn’t have success, until he came to the MCC. What was different?

“The application process is easy. It’s organized, and when they send you out on a job, there’s a schedule,” points out Sam “and they work out a bus route for you that’s always perfect, so you can get to work.  They even give us a lunch to take to work.”

“I got a Food Handler’s card through the MCC, and it’s a blessing. I am able to go out and do the jobs at the stadium concession, and I am having a ball.  There are also lots of day jobs doing like, basic carpentry, furniture moving, which are excellent jobs and I appreciate the chance to do that.”

Three and a half months after enrolling in the MCC’s supportive employment program, Sam was offered a permanent job as a street ambassador with the Metropolitan Improvement District. He accepted it , but then discovered a construction apprentice program at the University of Washington: the PACE program.  If he was accepted, he would make about $23 an hour!

“Seattle is an expensive town. With all my bills, I need a healthy wage to be able to support myself. But the apprentice program makes you go through a boot camp to qualify.  You have to carry bricks, shovel rocks into wheelbarrows, off-load the rocks, lift plywood, and transfer piles of rebar.  Then you have to run a certain distance.

“It’s about responsibility. The PACE program does not want someone who wants to laze around.  They want people to go out for work, do the right thing, and earn a wage where you can provide for yourself. They want to make sure you’ll work hard and be ready for a job when you graduate.  I was accepted and will train for 11 weeks.”

But Sam had a program. He could not afford rent to live anywhere but the shelter where he was sleeping. Sam came back to the MCC to ask for one last piece of support: a place to live. And with Jobs Connect funding, the Millionair Club Charity was able to pay for Sam’s rent at MCC’s own Kasota housing building.

“All this would not be possible without the MCC giving me the opportunity to better myself. Through the MCC I have a place to stay, I can do my laundry for free, and my meals are provided at the place I stay.  I do believe this will help me be a success at school.”

“And I want to pass that on to anyone out there who needs help to work. The MCC is where it’s at for good clothing and work.  In fact, I haven’t heard of any organization out there that’s like them.  Everyone should come to the MCC for help because it’s #1.”

“I want to thank the MCC and the staff at the MCC for giving me the opportunity to make myself better. And none of this would be possible without the donors. I want to thank the donors, for giving me this opportunity. I really appreciate y’all.”

“And when I do graduate I will come back to the MCC and volunteer myself. I want to help out and help others.”

You can help many more people like Sam, who want a “hand up, not a hand out,” by donating to the MCC’s supportive employment program today. Donations of any size are appreciated.  Thank you.

New Project Increases Outreach to Connect Homeless People to Jobs

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United Way of King County, City of Seattle, Millionair Club Charity and Downtown Seattle Association launch Jobs Connect employment project for homeless individuals

 Public private partnership aims to stabilize the lives of homeless individuals in downtown Seattle by rapidly connecting them to unfilled jobs.

SEATTLE (March 23, 2016) –  United Way of King County CEO Jon Fine, joined by Mayor Ed Murray and representatives from the Millionair Club Charity and the Downtown Seattle Association (DSA)  today launched Jobs Connect, a program which connects people living on the streets in downtown Seattle to work.

“We have people on the street who want to work, jobs going unfulfilled and many generous residents who want to help,” said Jon Fine of United Way of King County.  “Jobs Connect is an effective solution, with the potential to create an upward spiral in someone’s life that can make a real impact. “

With the homelessness state of emergency declared in our region, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray with King County Executive Dow Constantine committed new resources to help meet the immediate needs of people experiencing homelessness with additional outreach, services and shelter.

“As a community we have lifted thousands of people off of the street and prevented tens of thousands more from becoming homeless,” said Fine. “But homelessness is complex and pervasive and this crisis calls for new and innovative ways to get people back on their feet.”

While no single approach can meet needs of all the people living outside, complementary strategies can have a significant impact in moving people from homelessness to stability. Successfully working and being paid for your labor can have an extremely positive effect on a person, particularly in contrast to the isolating experience of life on the streets.

“We must shift the focus to longer-term solutions to homelessness, more than mats on the floor,” said Mayor Ed Murray. “We must talk about opportunity and hope for the future.   I want to thank all the private employers who are making these job opportunities available.  You are giving a precious gift – a brighter tomorrow.”

Economic conditions in our region make this an ideal time to launch the program, as demand for short-term employees is not currently being met. The Millionair Club currently leaves requests for employment unfilled during peak seasons.

Utilizing a mobile strategy, Millionair Club Charity outreach workers are circulating through downtown on foot and in Jobs Connect vans, focused on engaging and enrolling visible individuals.

Supportive services and assistance are provided to eliminate the common barriers that prevent many homeless people from working such as transportation, access to certification, storage of personal items and hygiene facilities.  The connection is rapid, with an assessment and services being delivered on day one, and on-the-job paid training beginning at $12 per hour on the second day.

“People who are living unsheltered find it hard to believe that they’re employable,” points out Millionair Club Charity Executive Director, Jim Miller.  “Their clothes are dirty; they’re cold, hungry, and have a backpack they have to carry around at all times with all their possessions.  Jobs Connect gives us the power to take our message to them where they’re living, bring them back to the Millionair Club Charity, and give them the support they need to be job ready.  It’s an amazingly empowering message for people at their lowest ebb of confidence – and one that will hopefully be the start to getting them into a job and housing.”

At launch, The Metropolitan Improvement District (MID), managed by the Downtown Seattle Association, is the anchor employer for Jobs Connect, offering work with the DSA/MID Clean Team. The clean team patrols the streets of downtown, picking up trash, removing graffiti and pressure-washing sidewalks, among other tasks. The MID identifies how many workers are needed the following day and fills those jobs with Jobs Connect participants.

“The Jobs Connect program allows our DSA/MID Clean Team to cover more ground and keep downtown clean, but there’s also a larger need that’s being met,” said DSA President & CEO Jon Scholes. “This program helps provide a path toward housing and stability to get people on a track that will improve their lives. We’re thrilled to be an anchor employer and to partner with these organizations to address homelessness in our city. The scope of the challenge we face around homelessness requires that we collaborate on new approaches.”

As the program grows to scale, additional downtown employers will be identified who employ workers on an ‘as need basis’ as well as additional employment specialists, outreach workers and Jobs Connect vans.

As the program grows to scale, Jobs Connect is seeking additional anchor employers with ‘as needed’ positions to be filled.

Start-up costs for Jobs Connect have already been raised with an initial investment of $92,000 from the City of Seattle, and an additional $85,800 raised from private philanthropy through United Way of King County. United Way plans to raise an additional $248,300 by July 1, 2016 to significantly expand the program.

Expected first year client contact will number 3,000 individuals with a take up rate of 40 percent.

To learn more about the Jobs Connect program visit www.uwkc.org/ending-homelessness/jobs-connect

No Crabbing About This Lunch

NO CRABBING ABOUT THIS LUNCH  Instead, the Millionair Club Charity’s clients were all smiles to be served golden and tender crab-stuffed Pollock, Ivar’s clam chowder, and Caesar salad, all sponsored for the 14th year by the At-Sea Processors Association.  Melinda Madsen Schmitt led a group from the APA, including new volunteers from  Glacier Fish Company, to serve the special meal.

At-sea Processors is a local office of the international At-sea Processors Association (APA), whose member companies have donated 12 million meals since the inception of the Community Catch program in 2000. The Alaska Pollock fishery is the United State’s largest fishery. Recognized internationally as one of the world’s best managed fisheries, Alaska Pollock landings account for about 30% of all seafood landed annually in the U.S.

Alaska Pollock is a high–‐quality whitefish used extensively in quick–‐serve and casual restaurants, consumer ready meals, frozen breaded products and Surimi seafood products. APA represents six companies that operate catcher/processor vessels in the Alaska Pollock fishery. You can learn more about APA and its Community Catch program at http://www.atsea.org/community_catch.php.

Help rebuild a life – Hire a worker

Last month, 7 men found a permanent job through the Millionair Club Charity’s supportive employment program.Dylan was one of the 7.

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In January, Dylan got a job as a cook for the caterers that serve the Microsoft campus.  He had been living in his van for about a month when he came to the Millionair Club.  He said he had no money and no connections and was beginning to get depressed. “The nice security guard at the MCC made me feel safe; and  the good food and cheerful people in the employment program made me feel powerful and positive.”

With MCC’s help, Dylan obtained his food handler’s card, alcohol server license, and work clothes.  After two months working the concessions at Century Link stadium, he was offered a permanent job at Compass Catering, who services the Microsoft Campus. “People like me want change, we’re not showing up to waste time, we want to change our lives.  We’ve made choices, but now we want change, we want help. We’re to the point where we realize we need to ask for help,” Dylan said.

By choosing to fill your employment and household help needs at the Millionair Club Charity, you are contributing to the future of people like Dylan. You are helping to provide regular meals, job coaching, clothing and hygiene services, and stability to others like him.

“It’s not about what’s your past — let’s not dwell on that.  Let’s look forward and show you how to overcome your problems – the MCC is a problem solver,” Dylan said.

Problem solve with us, for the members of our community who need it most. Request a worker here.

You can now support the Millionair Club Charity just by going shopping!

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Bartell Drugs is giving back to the community by encouraging shoppers to get a “B” Caring Card, where up to four percent of your purchase will go toward the Millionair Club Charity.

This offer is good at any of the 58 Bartell Drugs locations throughout western Washington. Just ask an employee associate at Bartell Drugs to sign yourself up for a card.

Here’s how it works: After making a purchase, simply swipe your “B” Caring Card and type in your 10-digit phone number and up to four percent can benefit the Millionair Club Charity! So you can help men and women who are in need in our community just by going shopping.

It’s that easy!

Click here to find out more information about getting your “B” Caring Card at Bartell Drugs today.

Larry’s epic 30,000 foot H.A.L.O. jump is a soaring success!

Right before the big jump, Larry and his team make last minute preparations.

Right before the big jump, Larry and his team make last minute preparations.

He did it!

After weeks of excitement and anticipation, Larry Kaminer on Sunday successfully jumped 30,000 feet in the sky to help provide job opportunities, meals and housing assistance to men and women in our community.

Larry’s military-style tandem H.A.L.O. jump (high altitude, low opening) has raised more than $24,000 so far to support our organization’s efforts to rebuild lives in greater Seattle.

“The three seconds we were standing in the open door before we exited the plane were the most breath-taking of my life,” Larry recalls. “It was minus 39 degrees outside when we jumped but I was so pumped up I didn’t even notice the cold.”

After free falling for two minutes, Larry’s parachute deployed and he spent the rest of the fall floating back safely to Earth. Larry personally wants to thank Kevin Holbrook at Halojumper.com, his tandem instructor and jump partner Mark Gerlach and his videographer John Forstal for making this jump successful.

So what inspired Larry to make this daring feat on behalf of the Millionair Club Charity?

“I have had the pleasure of hiring people from your organization and was always impressed with their work ethic, reliability and gratitude,” Larry says.

Stay tuned for video of Larry’s jump. Also, it’s still not too late to make a contribution! You can visit jumpforjobs.kintera.org to continue the momentum and help us reach our final goal of raising $30,000.

Way to go Larry! Thank you for your courage, bravery and having a big heart to serve people.