Lindsey Jasper of Washington School Nominated for Hope Award
Jasper has been nominated for he SafeKids Hope Award. Presented for exceptional work with area homeless students in Franklin County. Jasper started the Homeless Task force in Washington which still meets monthly on the lower level of the Washington Police Station.
In Franklin County, as in other small towns, suburbs and rural corners of the country, the homeless are often hidden, out of sight and mind, hard to reach and hard to help, say people who work with the homeless.
This poses a challenge for Franklin County. The causes of homelessness in small towns are the same as in big cities: poverty, mental illness, inadequate housing, domestic violence and the psychological wounds of war, according to the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness. But rural areas are more likely to be poor, with limited transportation, making it that much harder for the homeless to get to a center that can provide counseling, a housing voucher or medical care.
A handful of organizations are making strides toward tackling the issue, although most of the work is done by nonprofits. Advocates say most states are not doing enough and that a different approach is needed to solve the problem of rural homelessness.
STEPHANIE BECHARD, MONICA ASSAREH, JENNY ULRICH, JEANNIE JENKINS, ANITA STUDDARD, ERIC GRAINGER, CONNIE JUENGEL JULIE CONNER, JUDY STRAATMANN, EMILY SHARRATT, CAROL LABOUBE
Washington School Student Services Department offers resources and assistance to students and families. The department employs a school social worker, Lindsey Jasper and a school service worker.
The School District of Washington offers the, “Fighting Hunger, Fueling Minds” food backpack program. This is a weekend meal available to any student in the district and there are no requirements or restrictions for a student to access this service.