EASTSIDE INTERFAITH SOCIAL CONCERNS COUNCIL
P.O. BOX 662, Bellevue, WA 98009-0662
November 8, 2016 Meeting Minutes
The meeting was held in Bristol Hall of St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church and began at 12:00 noon and ran until 1:45 PM.
WELCOME: After 15 minutes of lunch and networking, the meeting was called to order and conducted by EISCC President Tony Copes.
OPENING PRAYER: Diane Richards provided the opening prayer, Grateful Beyond Deserving.
SELF-INTRODUCTIONS were made by 27 representatives and guests.
MINUTES of the October 11, 2016, meeting as written by Secretary Dick Jacke were unanimously approved as written. Reminder: for announcements to be included in the meeting minutes, please provide them to the incoming Secretary, Karen Studders; electronic submission preferred.
TREASURER’S REPORT Outgoing Treasurer Rev. JC Mitchell reported our accounts balance of about $93,710. JC replied to a question that the list of who paid dues was not available. Warren Marquardson is the incoming Treasurer.
ACTION NEEDED: The City of Bellevue and King County are working in partnership with Congregations for the Homeless and Imagine Housing to site a permanent men’s shelter and supportive housing in Bellevue. The site being studied is at 14350 SE Eastgate Way. Information can be found at http://www.bellevuewa.gov/eastside-mens-shelter.htm.
EISCC served as the fiscal agent for Congregations for the Homeless in its early years. The EISCC Board supports this siting of permanent men’s shelter and supportive housing in the City of Bellevue and has two requests of you:
– Write and send emails/ letters to Mike McCormick Huentelman, email@example.com or 425-452-4089 or contact Bellevue City Councilmembers directly.
– Attend as an individual or congregational representative the city council study session on Monday, November 28, 2016 at 6 PM, at Bellevue City Hall, where the city council will receive an update regarding the project.
For further information, please see attached November 18th letter of support from Eastside Human Services Forum, EHSF.
EISCC is a member of the EHSF and is represented by Rev. Steve Baber, who serves on the EHSF Board.
PROGRAM: Muslim Community Resource Center (MCRC) by Khizer Sheriff
MCRC started in 2010, is volunteer based and was founded by Khizer’s wife, Nickhath. Three part discussion: (1) overview, (2) photos and (3) events coming up. MCRC provides a common platform to bring mosques and schools together for service engagement on the eastside and in Seattle. Focus is to connect those in need with resources.
Core services: Homelessness and Hunger, Foodbanks and Shelters, Tent City 4 and Camp Unity Eastside, Refugee Assimilation, latest waive from Syria.
Services Provided: Housing, Adopt a Family and Self Sufficiency, Free Health Care, Elder Care, Funeral Care for those practicing Islamic Faith and Matrimonial Services.
Partner Leveraged Services: Housing & Shelter Assistance, Emergency Financial Assistance, Domestic & Family Issues & Counseling.
Refugee Assimilation Program: Resettlement agencies are DONE working with refugee after 90 days. MCRC has 4 Pillars: (1) Housing, (2) Household Assistance (40 truckloads of furniture, 6 clothing drives, 1 family to a hotel), (3) Vocational Services (identify those who need community college and ESL career counseling), (4) NEW Adopt a Family (10 so far, matched with family, mentor to navigate system, ongoing support including rent, utilities and food).
Needs that MCRC Sees on Eastside and in King County: (1) Lack of Housing. (2) Lack of Transportation, (3) Job Training, (4) Trust and Employer-Employee understanding challenges of being Muslim are critical and (5) Money in the form of Microloans, particularly in Seattle, Kent and Auburn.
MCRC Contact Information:
Phone: 1-888-404-MCRI or 425-954-MCRC (6272)
Address: 16225 NE 87th, Suite A-B, Redmond, WA
Hours: Tuesday only 10A-4P; 1:1 Counseling available by appointment; listed on 211
Impact of MCRC Service Partnership Projects:
- 4000 sandwiches & burritos made Friday nights and served Saturdays, partner with Seattle First Baptist
- > 100 families provided Christmas Eve dinner in Seattle Capitol Hill
- Tent City 4 (TC4) and Camp Unity Eastside (CUE) residents provided Thanksgiving dinner
- 950# Fresh Halal meat donated to Hopelink for food bank customers
- Raised $10K and partnered with CVS at 10/2/16 Crop Walk in Redmond
- Packed some backpacks for Back Pack Meals, a Program of EISCC
- Tents & sleeping bags provided to CUE & TC4
- Day of Dignity in Seattle
- Card with a dollar coin, list of services and prepaid grocery/food cards provided to pan handlers
- >500 families served by Ramadan Food Drive
- 800 Hygiene kits provided at Tent Encampments and Urban Rest Stops
- Partnered with Value Village for a Syria Clothing Drive
- Free Health Clinic at Mosque in Redmond
- Partnered with Habitat for Humanity in Sammamish Build
3 Upcoming Events – All are Welcome:
- Saturday November 12 9AM-12PM Poverty Simulation Workshop with Seattle University School of Theology & Ministry at the Redmond Mosque
- Tuesday November 14 10:30 AM-1PM Senior Women Golden Times at Redmond Mosque
- Sunday November 20 10AM- 1PM Free Health Clinic, expecting a pediatric physician, cardiologist, naturopath and acupuncturist
Khizer recently brought a MCRC donor to visit an Eastside tent encampment and see what it is like for people living outside in tents. The person was embarrassed at this cold, dark manner of sheltering people experiencing homelessness. MCRC hopes to catalyze this person’s new energy to change the way we shelter unhoused people on the Eastside.
SPOTLIGHTS: Linda Hillesheim contacted several local service providers who identified holiday needs.
Dec 16-Jan 3 Hopelink closes its foodbank and transforms it into a free toy store for parents to shop for free gifts for their children and grandchildren.
- Gifts and giftwrap. Families have created wish lists which are available from Hopelink. Gift donations must arrive at Hopelink by December 12.
- Food drives are helpful during the month of December since Hopelink’s foodbank is closed.
- Volunteers serve as personal shoppers; shifts are available. Store hours in Bellevue are T 12/20 9A-7P, W 12/21 9A-5P, Th 12/22 9A-7P. Shopping is set up at all 5 of Hopelink centers, with different hours of operation at the other 4 centers.
For holiday meals, Hopelink refers people to St. Thomas Church which hosts a Thanksgiving dinner and Sea Star Restaurant in Bellevue which provides a Christmas dinner. Both meals are donated by the respective hosts.
Started by serving children with disabilities. 2 locations: Bothell and Bellevue, at Crossroads. Kinderling is considering adding 3rd location in Renton.
Needs: Volunteers and gifts.
- Jubilee Reach, Tom Brewer, Director Community Relations / Chaplain, firstname.lastname@example.org, 425-746-0506
Focus on social, emotional learning. Bullying and tolerance: work with students and families in schools; referred by Family Connections Center. Dental clinics.
- Jubilee Elves sponsor a family; register on-line to help a family. 199 families and 246 children enrolled.
- Volunteer opportunities: before and after school to help children, interscholastic sports programs.
- >400 adults enrolled in English as a Second Language, ESL.Every Thursday Jubilee Reach hosts an international lunch. 90% Chinese at Sammamish Presbyterian Church.
- Annual fundraiser, Festival of Trees is Saturday November 12th.
Karen Studders acknowledged the important role that Jubilee Reach played and specifically called out employee Edi Flores and his language skills and relationships with Hispanic families attending school in Bellevue School District and residing in Highland Village. Recall that a coalition worked with and put together an unprecedented city/county/state partnership and saved low-income housing for the 200 Bellevue residents, including 76 families and 85 children, 90% of whom are Hispanic. The property was purchased by King County Housing Authority for $20 million; KCHA will manage the property. Reminder: Bellevue’s contribution is $2 million over 2 years. Letters of support of this transaction and thanking Bellevue City Council for their leadership are encouraged.
REFRESHMENT COORDINATOR Betty Spohn & Sandy Lewis: Diane Richards, Fran Wessling and Warren Marquedson provided the food for today’s meeting.
EISCC board: Tony Copes thanked Dick Jacke, outgoing secretary and Rev. JC Mitchell, outgoing interim treasurer for their service. Dick and JC will remain on the board as at-large members. Tony welcomed incoming board officers, Karen Studders, secretary and Warren Marquardson, treasurer.
Backpack Meals: Jan Starr: Currently providing weekend meals to 280 kids.
Congregations for Kids: Nancy Jacobs: Helped 1396 kids with backpacks and/or school supplies before school started. 28 of the 70 extra backpacks with supplies have been distributed so far this 2016-2017 school year.
Demographic information about Bellevue School District children:
- 149 students experiencing homelessness in Bellevue at this time; expect this number to increase and surpass last year’s total of 249
- White population has continued to decrease.Asian and white populations now equal at 38% each
- 95 different first languages
- In one high school, students speak 60 languages besides English, the most in the district
- In one elementary school, 77% of the students speak another language, the highest percentage in the district
- 18.8% students across the district qualify for free and reduced lunch, down slightly from last year’s 19.4%
- 18% of both elementary and middle school students qualified; 20% of high school students qualified.
- Across the district there are big differences, with individual schools ranging from 2% to 54%.Five schools had over 40% qualify.
EISCC Legislative Coordinator: Jean Harris encouraged everyone to vote even if you are feeling disenfranchised about the national election; there are many local candidates and initiatives on the ballot for consideration. Jean also noted that you can find FAN’s initiative recommendations at their website http://fanwa.org/2016-ballot-initiative-guide/
Tony Copes reported that there will be an Islamic Faith discussion the next 2 Sundays, November 13 & 20 at Newport Presbyterian in Bellevue, beginning at 9:45 AM. Jawad Khaki will be talking about the Muslim faith and relations with our Muslim neighbors. Jawad Khaki is a beloved member of the Muslim and Interfaith Communities on the Eastside and a former Vice President at Microsoft. He is a member of the IMAN Center in Kirkland, and served as imam there. He speaks and teaches on Islam and interfaith issues nationwide and conducted a joint sermon with Jim Patten at Newport
Presbyterian some years ago.
Sandy Lewis announced that St. Louise de Marillac Parish, 141 156th Ave. S.E., Bellevue, will host the annual Thanksgiving Eve Community Prayer Service on Wednesday, Nov. 23, at 7:30 p.m. The hour-long event will feature music and reflections from Jewish, Christian, Muslim and Native American faith traditions. All are welcome.
Karina O’Malley announced that the Kirkland Interfaith Network is holding its Alternative Gift Fair this weekend from 10AM-4 PM.
ACTION NEEDED: The City of Bellevue is accepting comments regarding the Congregations for Homeless, CFH, proposed permanent men’s shelter at Eastgate. Several public meetings have been held. On Monday, November 28, 2016 at 6 PM, please send a congregational representative to the public meeting at Bellevue City Hall. Emails/ letters of support are also needed and should be sent to email@example.com and/or city council representatives.
Linda Hillesheim announced the upcoming Unity Home for the Holidays – ARTS & CRAFTS FAIR on Saturday, Dec. 3 – 10:00 am – 4:00 pm and Sunday, Dec. 4 – 9:00 am – 1:00 pm. All proceeds go to The Sophia Way. LOCAL & HANDCRAFTED Fiber Art / Jewelry / Fine Arts /Cards & Calendars / Photography / Décor / Holiday Greenery / Gifts & Much More! RAFFLE: Beautiful basket filled with donated items from artists at the fair. If you would like to participate,
Elizabeth Maupin said Tent City 4 needs gas for their generator in addition to a host site. TC4 has been on High Point in Issaquah since September 25, where it will remain until another congregation agrees to host. To find out more about what hosting TC4 entails, please call the camp at 206-618-3901, and if you are interested in providing dinner one night or are interested in other ways that you can help, please call .
Karen Studders announced that city councils are discussing budgets and in October Eastside service providers sent letters to ARCH and ARCH member cities requesting 39 Eastside cities increase the number of low-income and affordable housing units on the Eastside, by updating the parity goals for the Eastside Housing Trust Fund and increasing their total contributions from $1-2 million to $3-6 million per year. Letters are attached. Please write emails or call your local city council members and request that your city council increase its Eastside Housing Trust Fund contribution. Check out the HDC website for a calendar of budget hearings, talking points, tips for advocacy, and links to email your city council! See http://www.housingconsortium.org/eastside-housing-trust-fund/
Warren Marquardson said last year the Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints had 10,000 visitors at its Bellevue Festival of the Nativity. It is open to the public December 2-5, 9-11AM, noon to 9 PM. No charge. 15205 SE 28thSt., Bellevue. Various musical performances in the evenings, including the Total Experience Gospel Choir on December 5 at 7 PM.
CLOSING PRAYER: Tony Copes provided the closing prayer in Farida’s absence, What you Believe Into Practice.
THE NEXT EISCC MEETING will take place on Tuesday, January 10, 2016, 12:00 – 1:30 pm
(There is NO meeting in December 2016.)
PROGRAM: Faith Action Network Preview of 2017 Washington Legislative Session by Rev. Paul Benz.
LOCATION: St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church, Bristol Hall, 4228 Factoria Boulevard SE, Bellevue, WA
Karen Studders, EISCC Secretary