Mission Outreach Expands with COVID-19

Volunteers say basic needs are still number 1 priority

Portland Union Gospel Mission’s efforts to provide basic life essentials to those living in tents and encampments spread through the metro area now includes education about the coronavirus pandemic.

With the emergence of COVID-19, the mission is using its mobile outreach Search + Rescue van to educate the homeless about the virus and its spread and checking to make sure people get medical care if needed.

Search + Rescue goes out five days a week making sure those experiencing homelessness have what they need to survive, building relationships, and helping people find the resources they need to move out of homelessness.

Only about 25% of the homeless population lives in Old Town. Search + Rescue was developed to serve the remaining 75%. According to Union Gospel officials, many people do seem to be aware of COVID-19, but their main concerns are still getting enough food and staying safe day to day.

The Mission says it urgently needs bottled water, gloves, blankets, packaged snacks and hand sanitizer. Donations can be dropped off at 3 N.W. Third Ave. Financial gifts can be made by calling 503-274-4483 or by going online to ugmportland.org/donate.

Union Gospel Mission’s purpose is “Feeding the hungry, restoring the addict and loving our neighbor.” Union Gospel Mission has been serving Portland since 1927. Union Gospel Mission provides meals and care for the homeless and operates LifeChange -- a transformative recovery program for men, women and children. Contact Union Gospel Mission at 503-274-4483, ugmportland.org or on social media @ugmpdx.