A Better Way to Give

Take a walk through retail areas of Pensacola and it's almost a sure bet that you will either be asked for money by someone sitting on a bench or in a doorway or you'll feel compelled to give. However, it is not certain that the few dollar bills or handful of change that you share with that person will actually end up helping or hurting them. So, Leadership Pensacola (LeaP) class of 2016 joined forces with Opening Doors, formerly known as EscaRosa Coalition on the Homeless, to find A Better Way to Give. 

Join Northwest Florida in providing A Better Way To Give!

In all, 40 meters were installed along Palafox Place and Main Street, near Community Maritime Park and around various parks and squares in the downtown Pensacola area.

“Homeless individuals have, unfortunately, become a largely ignored challenge in Pensacola, due mainly to misinformation,” said Amanda Hindsman, LeaP class of 2016 project chair. “As a result, funding to help them escape the cycle of poverty is limited. Through this project, we will educate the public about the challenges they face while providing for them solutions to the seemingly insurmountable problems they face.”

A Better Way to "Gift" Card: Street Outreach Gift Cards

Donors can pay for gift cards to give to homeless people that they or others encounter on the streets. The gift cards aren't immediately redeemable at a store, but require the recipient to go into the Opening Doors NWFL Drop Center. There they can exchange the card for a gift card valid at a retailer for everything from clothes to food to bus passes. The cards cannot be redeemed for cash. The cards also get the individual to meet with case managers for longer term services that help with housing, employment and health.