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CHAT News: Community heroes, Big news, Everhart update

We never stop creating affordable housing options for folks in Chico.

Hello, to our wonderful supporters!

If you're like me, you might feel conflicted this time of year. On the one hand, I'm thankful for the rain that helps replenish our aquifers in this drought-prone region. On the other, I worry about the effect this inclement weather has on individuals who, for various reasons, are living unsheltered. I'm talking about people who sleep outdoors in tents, encampments, under bridges and other areas not meant for housing—folks who are therefore vulnerable to the elements. According the most recent Butte County Homeless Census, at least 580 individuals live unsheltered. My hope is that, someday, every person living in these circumstances is able to transition to stable, safe housing. At CHAT, we are dedicated to making that vision a reality through our various programs, including master leasing. On that note, we have some exciting news to share this week. We also want to say how very grateful we are for Butte County's local shelter organizations, and especially so right now for Safe Space Chico, which no doubt is saving lives this winter. Read on to learn more about our friends at Safe Space, our big news, an update on Everhart Village, and more.  

-Nicole Drummond, CHAT executive director


Community heroes 


A big round of applause: Safe Space Chico organizes and operates a seasonal shelter during extreme weather, including a winter shelter that has been critical to protecting the lives of local unsheltered residents. Each night, 50 to 60 people take refuge within one of the host locations, all of them local churches, and are provided a hearty meal prepared by volunteers. 


This season, Safe Space had difficulty finding an intake center—a place for unhoused folks to store their belongings before being transported to the night's lodging—but thankfully, Trinity United Methodist Church, already one of the host churches, stepped up to offer its facilities. We greatly appreciate Trinity United Methodist and the other host churches "walking the talk," and we were happy to see the Chico Enterprise-Record commend them in a recent editorial


A big shout out also goes to the many helpers who make Safe Space Chico possible. Speaking of which, additional volunteers are needed this season, including meal providers, intake crew and shelter crew at the churches. In addition, Safe Space is seeking helpers to do light cleaning and other tasks at Safe Space's headquarters. Contact nicole@safespacechico.org for more info on volunteering. 


(Fun fact: Did you know that CHAT began as the Safe Space Winter Shelter back in 2013? To learn more about our history, including how CHAT began as a wintertime emergency shelter at the Peace & Justice Center, click here to read longtime supporter Nancy Park's excellent story in our fall newsletter that reflects on CHAT's efforts over the past decade.)  


Big news!

CHAT volunteers take a breather after delivering donated furniture to a new master lease house. 


New digs: Thanks to local advocate and CHAT supporter Sharon Fritsch, CHAT has an amazing new master lease property! Sharon purchased the house specifically to lease to CHAT at an affordable rate. 


What's more, the house four bedrooms and three bathrooms, which makes it perfect for a shared home! This has allowed CHAT to provide stable housing for individuals coming from area shelters, including folks from the Genesis pallet shelter, the city of Chico facility operated by our community partner the Jesus Center. 


It's amazing what CHAT can accomplish with help from people like Sharon. Truly, our supporters are amazing! In fact, the aforementioned house is completely furnished thanks to additional CHAT supporters, those who've donated various home goods to our Furniture Warehouse, as well as the volunteers who delivered everything and set it all up. 


If you're interested in making a donation to our Furniture Warehouse, click here to learn more about the gently used (or new) items we can use. Our volunteer-run facility is open for three hours each Wednesday and Friday, with drop-off and pick-up coordinated by CHAT volunteer extraordinaire Rex. For more info, call or text him at 530-588-0731 or email furniture@chicohousingactionteam.net


Everhart update

Village Assistants and Housing Support Coordinators at CHAT orientation with Executive Director Nicole Drummond (right). 


New faces: We're full steam ahead on Everhart Village, and that means our recently hired Village Assistants are getting prepped for this long-awaited CHAT collaboration with Butte County Behavioral Health (BCBH). That includes receiving Crisis Prevention and Intervention Training provided by BCBH. 


It's an exciting time for CHAT, as we welcome some fantastic folks into our organization. We're looking forward to getting to know each other better. One thing we already know we have in common: a passion for making the world a better place by working together to provide our community with affordable housing.


Much appreciated!


Stay tuned for additional updates on Everhart Village. In the meantime, if you'd like to help with village necessities, please check out our Amazon wish list (click here). We update it regularly to ensure we are able to operate smoothly, and we're still in need of some essentials. 


Thanks to everyone who has made purchases thus far. We appreciate you! 



As always, thank you for reading our email news. Please consider forwarding this email to share CHAT's vital work with friends, colleagues, and family members who may be interested in helping further local housing solutions. 





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