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Homelessness experts to speak at Bath meeting

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Homelessness experts to speak at Bath meeting

BATH — The new Greater Bath Homeless Initiative will host two speakers at a City Hall meeting Monday, Jan. 20.

Mike Mooney, director of New Beginnings' Transitional Living Services in Lewiston, and Cindy Namer, director of Homeless Initiatives for Maine Housing, will speak at the 6 p.m. gathering.

The initiative is comprised of citizens, churches, local and state public officials, and members of human service organizations working to find housing and services for homeless individuals and families in the greater Bath area.

A recent press release said the weather "has been a grim reminder of the plight of the homeless who have had to seek the warmth and shelter that most of us take for granted."

Martha Stein, director of community relations for Tedford Housing, said last month that the organization runs two supportive housing apartments in Bath for people who have previously been homeless. A case manager works with residents to help them get their lives in order and gain access to needed services.

A five-unit building, Gilbert Place at 500 Middle St., is for adults with mental health-related disabilities. The six-unit Evergreen Woods building at 10 James Way, which has two- and three-bedroom apartments, is for families where a primary adult has a disabling condition, Stein said.

Both buildings are almost always full, and residents pay rent and must follow specific rules, Stein said.

The homelessness initiative is exploring ideas such as identifying unoccupied buildings in Bath that could provide immediate housing, establishing a volunteer group to fill transportation needs for homeless people, founding a thrift shop to raise funds for the Bath Area Food Bank, and re-establishing the bank's clothing exchange.

The speakers will discuss the establishing of programs and the finding of funding resources. Call Betty King for more information at 443-9005.

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.