Hello Dearest Friends of FUSION,
My heart is full as I reflect on the huge amount of work currently being done by FUSION Volunteers and Staff to help us successfully navigate and sustain our new growth. As you may know, we have taken several huge leaps recently.
Can you imagine experiencing homelessness with small children and no place to stay for Christmas? On Christmas Eve we were able to welcome such a family as our very first residents at the new Pete Andersen FUSION Family Center in Federal Way.
The Family Center team of 12 — six employees and six volunteers — continues to grow as does our number of families in shelter. To date, we have 24 families, (25 adults and 46 children) receiving safe, secure shelter paired with supportive services. In addition to providing in-house permanent housing and employment assistance, we have partnered with community agencies that come on-site to provide their critical services. With this combined help, three families have already transitioned into stability and permanent housing since we opened!
I would like to express our deepest gratitude for all of the generous donations of clothing, toys, hygiene items, shoes, and so much more leading up to opening of the Family Center. The response was unprecedented, and our families have everything they need to begin working on their goals and plans to become self-sufficient. The Family Center can provide 29 families at a time with up to 90 days of emergency shelter and a caring, supportive environment for families to make the changes necessary to move forward once and for all. We anticipate serving 116 families (400 individuals) in 2021.
Another huge change at FUSION is that we have launched a beautiful new website at fusionfederalway.org. Our Marketing Team has been working diligently to ensure that our site will provide you with the most current information and updates to keep you in the FUSION loop.
Additionally, we are so excited to let you know that we will be re-opening the Poverty Bay Café in the coming weeks! This iconic café will continue to serve some of Poverty Bay’s favorite menu items as well as coffee and tea, and also will have great “grab and go” meal options. Once the café is reestablished, FUSION will be implementing an employment development program at the restaurant that will provide case managed employment opportunities in culinary arts and the food service industry. FUSION guest families and community members will have access to employment support through this innovative new program, and the community will again have its beloved Poverty Bay Cafe. We do hope to see you there!
And last but not least, plans are already in the works as we get ready to launch our Annual Art Event at Dumas Bay Centre on August 4. The theme will be announced at our first event planning meeting scheduled for Thursday, March 25, with more information to follow from this year’s Event Chair, Cassandra Rehorst. This will be a live event with limited tickets (contingent upon safety requirements) and there will be a livestream option for those unable to attend in person. We can’t wait to share more about it!
Until then, be safe and we hope to see you in the FUSION Décor Boutique or Poverty Bay Cafe very soon!
FUSION, Executive Director