1Cares – Advocacy

2010 Tent City

You care? You matter.

1Cares is an umbrella for several projects, and serves to embrace those initiatives that don’t fit within our other three areas of focus (1Works, Project Connect, and Veterans Matter) but absolutely do line up with our mission of creating ways for people – housed and unhoused – to matter to each other. 1Cares typically supports, often financially, the start-up of simple ventures that directly impact those who are unhoused. Projects like Toledo Portrait, which gets amazing photographers to donate one day to taking pictures of people who could not otherwise afford professional protraiture for themselves and their families. It’s an amazng event that touches a lot of people and raises dignity and awareness. We also provide small grants and donations to other organizations that operate alongside us, including Food For Thought and LifeLine Toledo

The other key piece to 1Cares is advocacy and developing collaboration. 1Matters is an advocate with and for those who have lost domestic autonomy. At times, this has included

Being aware of what’s going on in the community that affects our unhoused neighbors is one of our priorities, and keeping ourselves “firmly flexible” in our structure means we can be responsive when the needs arise. It’s our commitment to collaboration with other organizations that developed our relationship with the local VA Healthcare for Homeless Veterans team, led by Shawn Dowling who has invited us to searching for veterans in Flint and Toledo. (That collaboration also gave birth to Veterans Matter, but we’ve already told that story!) The philosophy of 1Cares, which is basically “what’s next – what can we do NOW to matter?”, keeps us open to ideas like spreading Project Connect to other communities, like when Bev Phillips in Findlay wanted to see Hancock County hold their own event. We’ve also helped Lenawee County in Michigan with their event.
 
You could almost say that 1Cares is the “laboratory” of 1Matters. It’s where the collaborations start, where the relationships are built, where the ideas are encouraged. Because we believe every 1 Matters, we want to empower and support whenever any 1 cares. That’s what changes the world.