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Highlands agency focuses on Homelessness problem

This property on E. Wallisville in HIghlands is being acquired by the East Harris County Navigation Center for the Homeless, to be a transitional living center to provide services and temporary housing for the homeless, as they receive help from the organization.

HIGHLANDS – The Marcelous Williams Resource Center is a social service agency, headquartered on Main Street in Highlands, providing services to the needy and the homeless. It was started several years ago by Eddie and Ramonia Williams, having seen the need for social services in the East Harris County area.

The agency also has an office in the Sterling Library in Baytown, staffed by Tammy Guidry, the director of community engagement and homeless services.

Tammy Guidry and Ramonia Williams, above, and Eddie Williams provide services to the community.

Director Ramonia Williams told this newspaper, “On November 16, 2021 we celebrated the 1 year Anniversary of our Homeless Services Program. Through this program, we have assisted 190 clients from November 3, 2020 to November 3, 2021. Clients were able to meet with our Director of Community Engagement and Homeless Services, Tammy Guidry, to obtain services such as I.D. cards, SNAP food benefits, medical services, social security cards, and birth certificates.

“Twelve of our clients qualified for a new emergency housing voucher program from HUD through the Baytown Housing Authority and are now in their new apartments. We would like to say THANK YOU to everyone who came out to celebrate with us. A special THANK YOU goes out to Sterling Municipal Library for offering us office space and for showing us so much love.

“THANK YOU to our partners United Way of Greater Baytown and Chambers County, The Harris County Sheriffs Department Homeless Outreach Team, Love Network, Hearts and Hands of Baytown, and Legacy Community Health for all of the support given to assist our clients.”

Williams notes that her agency has helped housing, food, medical, rent, home repair after a disaster, ID cards, utility bills, and employment opportunities.

The newest effort to help with the homelessness problem by the agency is a partnership with Tom Kelchner in a project known as the East Harris County Navigation Center for the Homeless, Inc.

Following the example of other Navigation Centers around Houston, the EHCNC plans on “supporting homeless clients on their journey from hopelessness to hopefulness.”

The goal of the organization will be to serve and support individuals, families, and veterans, according to Kelchner.

They say that services and support programs will be administered by experienced case workers and program specialists.

In a promotional brochure issued by EHCNC, an extensive list of “project partners” is listed, including churches, Baytown social organizations, Harris County Precinct 2, Harris County Sheriff’s Department Homeless Outreach Team, and many others.

The Navigation Center is just in the early stages of fund raising, and establishing working relationships with its partners. Acquisiton of the residential property on Wallisville is still in the due-diligence stage. It does not expect to be operational until sometime near the end of 2022, according to Ramonia Williams.

Marcelous-Williams Resource Center receives funding from the United Way, who are also sponsoring a series of meetings termed “Passport to Change” dealing with the homeless problem. The next meeting is January 25th.