Home.A feature length documentary about the homelessness crisis in North Dakota.
a humanitarian crisis
The 2017 U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Annual Homelessness Assessment Report attributes the largest percentage increase in homelessness in the United States to North Dakota – a 26% increase between 2016 and 2017. Over 58% of the people experiencing homelessness without shelter were families with children, the highest rate in the country.
“Home.” is a feature length documentary about the homelessness crisis in North Dakota. Understanding housing as a human right and as an inherent need to the health and happiness of all persons, the documentary will examine the myths of homelessness, its causes and identify the state-wide organizations and individuals currently engaged in the fight to end homelessness in North Dakota.
Housing: A human right
(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.
(2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.
documenting the state
From community to community, the story of best practices, of the myths of homelessness and of the human need for housing are being documented.
THE FRONT LINES OF HOMELESSNESS
Individuals who are or have experienced homelessness first hand, and the North Dakota community members working to end homelessness in North Dakota.
Social Worker, Northlands Rescue MissionAnita became Northlands Rescue Mission’s full time Advocacy team social worker in the Fall of 2017. She previously was employed in a homeless shelter located in Crookston MN. Anita received a BSW from Minot State University and an MSW from the University of Minnesota. She is a licensed ND/MN social worker with over 30 years of experience. In addition to her social work career, Anita recently ended a 20-year stint as a MN licensed Adult Foster provider.
Shelter Services Dir, YWCA Cass ClayAngela Daly is Shelter Services Director for YWCA Cass Clay’s emergency shelter in Fargo, ND, which provides safety for women and children escaping domestic violence and poverty. The shelter typically serves 1,500 annually. Angela leads the expert and caring team of managers who provide services to help women find housing and transportation, gain jobs and education, access health care, and secure child care for their families.
dr. cheryl ann kary
Executive Director, Sacred Pipe Resource CenterCheryl Ann Kary (Hunkuotawin) is an enrolled member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. A 2013 Bush Fellow, Kary currently serves as the Executive Director of the SPRC. She has worked in and with Tribal communities and populations for the majority of her career and, in addition to professional responsibilities, Kary advocates for Native people and Tribes in a variety of volunteer efforts.
YWCA & Fargo Public Schools Student Resources / Study Buddies Coordinator
Amanda Peou works between the YWCA Cass Clay emergency shelter and the Fargo Public Schools coordinating McKinney Vento Act services to students and their families experiencing homelessness. Amanda connects with families living in hotels/motels, doubled up with family and friends, in their cars, or other emergency shelters. Amanda helps families identify and navigate through resources available within the community to meet their needs to ensure students are meeting their academic goals and getting to school on a regular basis.
Executive Director, Northlands Rescue MissionSue Shirek was most recently the executive director at Care and Share of Crookston, MN, a homeless shelter. Prior to that time, she was a patrol officer with the Grand Forks Police Department for 26 years. Her assignments also included the Community Resource Bureau as a neighborhood resource officer and as a school resource officer in the Grand Forks middle schools. She retired in 2013. A resident of Thompson, Shirek serves on the Board of Directors of Prairie Harvest Mental Health and Third Street Clinic, both in Grand Forks.
Officer jesseca White
Downtown Resource Officer, Fargo Police DepartmentOfficer Jesseca White is one of two Downtown Resource Officers (DRO) with the Fargo Police Department. The DRO’s are specifically assigned to provide enhanced services to the downtown area. The main focuses of the DRO’s are to help promote a revitalized, safe, and vibrant downtown that appeals to citizens of Fargo and visitors.
Executive Director, Austin's Mission
Katie Brovold realized there where gaps in services for the homeless who had mental health and addiction issues. In 2017 Austin’s Mission was formed. The mission of Austin’s Mission is to provide a non judgement and safe environment to those experiencing homelessness. It would provide a place for an individual who is high or intoxicated a place to stay. This dream and quest is still being pursued.
Whitney Fear RN, BSN
RN Case Manger / Shelter & Community Outreach Nurse, Homeless Health ServicesWhitney White was born and raised on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. She is a proud member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe. Whitney is passionate about bringing equity to healthcare, the use of Holistic Nursing and increasing the level of diversity within the Nursing profession. She currently serves as the Nurse Case Manager and Community Outreach Nurse for Homeless Health Services in Fargo.
Executive Director, Minot Area Homeless CoalitionLouis McLeod is the Executive Director of the Minot Area Homeless Coalition, Inc., an agency dedicated to advocating, coordinating, and optimizing services for homeless persons in the greater Minot area (Bottineau, Burke, McHenry, Mountrail, Pierce, Renville, and Ward Counties). Mr. McLeod has over 40 years of management/supervisory experience along with a law enforcement/human service/counseling background. He has degrees in criminal justice & sociology.
Developer, Beyond Shelter
Lisa Rotvold has a passion for helping communities meet the needs of all of their citizens by including affordable housing in their local infrastructure. In her role at BSI, Lisa is responsible for development of affordable rental properties through new construction or acquisition and rehabilitation. With 24 years of experience in the affordable housing industry, Lisa has done work ranging from direct development, to grant administration, to providing technical and development assistance to communities.
CEO, Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota & Lutheran Social Services HousingJessica Thomasson serves as the CEO of Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota and Lutheran Social Services Housing Inc. – two non-profit corporations that, together with their partners, help people and communities across the state of North Dakota thrive through their efforts related to affordable housing, child care, mental health, disaster response, senior services, and support for young families. LSS currently owns or manages thirty projects (totaling over 900 units) in communities all across the state.
Dr. george connell
Professor, Concordia CollegeGeorge Connell is Professor of Philosophy at Concordia College, where he has taught since 1986. He attended Mercer University and then went on to graduate school at Vanderbilt University. He recently completed terms as Division Chair of Humanities at Concordia and as the President of the Soren Kierkegaard Society. He is currently spending a semester of sabbatical research focusing on issues of home and homelessness.
Homeless Program Manager, YouthWorksMark Heinert is a Licensed Social Worker. He has 27 years of social work experience with youth and families, 22 years at Youthworks. Mr. Heinert has been in key leadership positions advocating for the homeless with: the North Dakota Coalition for Homeless Persons, the Missouri Valley Coalition for Homeless People, and the governing body of the Coordinated Assessment, Referral and Evaluation System (CARES), which is a product of HUD’s Continuum of Care (CoC).
Executive Director, Community Action Partnership of North Dakota
Andrea Olson works on a number of initiatives and programs for the seven Community Action Agencies in North Dakota. Community Action Agencies were originally established under the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 to fight America’s War on Poverty. By combining local, state, private, and federal resources Community Action helps low- and moderate-income people of all ages to secure the opportunities they need to obtain and maintain self-sufficiency.
Executive Director, FM Coalition for Homeless PersonsCody Schuler sees his work as a piece of a larger puzzle of ending homelessness by organizing people to come together to change systems and advocate for social justice. Since coordinating efforts in implement access to services across North Dakota and West Central Minnesota, he has shifted to a more local focus on advocacy, collaboration, and education During the 2017 Legislative Assembly, Cody served as the Legislative Coordinator for the ND Coalition for Homeless People.
Human Trafficking Specialist, YouthworksMara Wessel, M.S. Graduated from Minnesota State University Moorhead with Bachelors degrees in Criminal Justice and Sociology; and a Graduate degree in Counseling and Student Affairs with a Certificate in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Mara began working at Youthworks in 2016. Throughout her time at Youthworks Mara has experience working in various programs including Street Outreach, Transitional Living, Out of School Suspension, and Human Trafficking.