What Can You Do to Solve Homelessness in Seattle?

It Will Take a Lot More than Another Free Meal or a Night Shelter

Look at this trend:

(This doesn’t even include the rest of King, Pierce, and Snohomish County)

Year in Seattle

One Night Count1 of Homeless*

2012

8830

2013

9062

2014

9294

2015

10,047

2016

10,688

2017

11,643

*These figures combine three categories:
homeless people on the street, in shelters,
and in transitional housing.

 

Homelessness isn’t getting better in Seattle. Men, women, youth, children. Families. Veterans. All ethnic groups. The streets are getting more crowded each year.

And there are a lot of great nonprofits and government agencies trying to help solve homelessness. But while those efforts have certainly made a difference, the overall problem is getting worse.
We need a new strategy. A new approach. A different way to engage with homeless people on a more personal level.
Do you want to help?
Homeless people have been given free food and clothes for years. But does giving free stuff work? Is it an effective way to truly change the lives of the homeless? If it were, the above table should be trending the other way, right?
Babysteps Ministry was started because people like you want to do something different. Something that works.

 

Meeting Their Greatest Need

When you decide to minister to the homeless with us, you’ll use a relational approach. Our first step to solve homelessness is not to meet physical needs. It’s to be friends. To understand. To just be.
Homeless men and women are people, just like you. Sounds obvious, but it needs to be stated, because homeless people are the most ignored people on the planet. Isolation and feeling ignored are two of the worst things for anyone to experience. They crush the spirit. Demoralize the soul. Harden the heart.
And homeless people live with that experience every day. This is their single greatest need, and no amount of free food will meet it.
So —
We are not counselors.
We are not case managers.
We do not provide services.
There are many great Seattle nonprofits and government organizations already meeting these needs. But often, another intake and another free meal are not what’s needed most.
The first and most important need is friendship. Using a relational approach, you can build trust and develop genuine relationships with our homeless neighbors. Spend time sitting, talking, and eating. Call each other on the phone. Try to love them as God does.
At Babysteps, you’ll be out here with them, on the front lines.

 

Trust → Value → Confidence → Action

As you help create a community based on God’s love and what we call relational discipleship, you will empower homeless people to take ownership of their lives, with confidence. Relational peer support from people like you ignites new hope that they can restart their lives.
As they grow in their own sense of self-worth, and start to realize they want more out of life, you can help them take the steps (baby steps!) to push forward toward a new future.
Babysteps succeeds when our homeless friends become just friends. Off the streets, no longer without a place to live. Building a new life. Like Andre Starks.

Read Andre’s incredible story of escaping the streets and helping others do the same

When you join us as a volunteer or financial supporter, you are committing to walk alongside homeless men and women in Seattle and King County.
You are helping them take baby steps toward a complete life transformation. That’s how we solve homelessness. One new relationship — one new friend — with God’s love – at a time.

1. Data from One Night Count