Local organizations are working together to support employment, mental health, GED tutoring, and other programs that specifically help homeless individuals gain footing toward finding permanent housing.

Taking steps to mitigate negative effects of the affordable housing shortage in Newport County, BankNewport, the Newport Rotary, the Middletown Baptist Church, and Newport Mental Health are providing funding and resources to help the homeless population develop individual plans toward wellness and housing.

“Our community partners are stepping up, helping us offer services designed to help the homeless individual create a housing and service plan, which will serve as a pathway to securing permanent housing,” said Chief Operating Officer Dayna Gladstein, adding that Newport Mental Health is providing mental health and substance use services, vocational assistance and other services to many of Newport County’s homeless population.

In announcing a grant to provide for basic human needs, President and CEO Jack Murphy of BankNewport noted Newport Mental Health’s program as “an invaluable resource” for people to gain access to the services they need on their path to recovery.

Pastor Gary Whitney of the Middletown Baptist Church and church member Priscilla Kloewer, are offering GED math preparation and anger management courses to the homeless community. 

 “People need the basics, and they want opportunities for development so they can support themselves,” said Kloewer. She said the church is also holding a canned food drive for the homeless individuals in local shelters.In addition, Newport Rotary and the Newport Rotary Foundation have provided grant funding. “We are extremely impressed with how well thought out, community-centric, and complete the services are that NMH provides,” said President Avram Dorfman of the Newport Rotary. Dorfman added his “deep gratitude” for all members of the community who enable the Newport Rotary and the Newport Rotary Foundation to give gifts by supporting the organizations’ Citrus Drive, Newport Polo Magazine and Newport Polo Charity Match fundraisers.  He urges residents who would like to make a difference in the community to email info@newportrotary.org.

Source: Newport Mental Health

Ryan Belmore

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp.  He has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

He currently serves on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the boards of Fort Adams Trust, Lucy's Hearth, and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

In 2020, he was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.

He is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, the Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, he spent 39 years living in Rhode Island before recently moving to Alexandria, Virginia, with his wife and two rescue dogs. He still considers Rhode Island home, and visits at least once a month.