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Life Lines
 News about people and programs from the 
 Seattle Human Services Department
JULY 2010
New director starts on July 26
Dannette R. Smith will begin work as Acting Director of the Seattle Human Services Department on Monday, July 26.
Mayor Mike McGinn appointed Ms. Smith to the director position in early June. She is former director of the Fulton County Department of Family and Children Services, part of the State of Georgia Department of Human Services and the state's largest human services agency.
Ms. Smith has more than 20 years of experience in the human services field and has a strong commitment and passion for working with youth and families. She has worked to provide high quality human services by engaging community and families, and forming partnerships.
Much more news to come!

Upward Bound seniors graduate

Upward Bound graduatesAll 17 of the high school seniors in the Seattle Human Services Department's Upward Bound program graduated this June, and 16 are enrolled in post-secondary institutions for fall 2010, including eight who are going to University of Washington. Twelve students have been awarded scholarships totaling more than $35,000 in addition to federal and state aid. Upward Bound prepares high school students for higher education by supporting academic achievement, goal setting, career exploration, and helping students choose what they want to study and what college to attend. Students are ethnically diverse and from low-income families with parents who have not attended college.
Summer youth employment starts on July 7
SYEP youth gardenerThe Seattle Youth Employment Program will kick off its summer internships on July 7. This summer, the program will provide 400 youth, ages 14-21, with employment experience and work-readiness skills through seven-week internships. Youth will be working with nonprofit organizations and government agencies as junior counselor trainees, media production interns, library assistants, lab technician assistants, outreach interns and other positions. Youth work up to 28 hours per week and earn $8.55/hour. In addition, two groups of youth will learn about careers in health care and the skilled trades through a combination of classroom instruction and work experience. The program ends on Aug. 25.
Homeless encampment protocol more humane
APAC logoUnder direction of Mayor Mike McGinn, the Seattle Human Services Department developed new protocols and procedures earlier this year to provide a more humane response to homeless encampments on City property. The changes expand outreach, notification, and the availability of shelter. Among the improvements:
  • Outreach to encampment residents is no longer limited to sites with three or more structures. Outreach workers visit sites to see if campers need services or temporary shelter or housing.
  • Notification to campers of cleanup (72 hours in advance) has been expanded to sites that are "permanently posted." Permanent posting occurs if a site has been cleared three times within 60 days. Previously these sites were exempt from notification.
  • The City will improve coordination between outreach workers and workers doing the cleanup to provide accurate information about cleanup dates and times.
  • The use of beds at the Roy Street shelter will be expanded. When this shelter first opened, it was designated as a shelter only for campers who were referred by outreach workers. Now, empty beds can be used by other homeless people who need shelter.
  • The City will provide information about cleanups to business owners and residents directly affected by encampment sites.  
For more information, please contact Edwin Obras, Seattle Human Services Department by e-mail, or by phone, 206-684-0419.
 Homeless shelter volunteersAdult Day Center volunteers
Volunteers from the First University Methodist Church in Mobile, Alabama recently helped paint out graffiti at the Compass Housing Alliance's Adult Day Center in downtown Seattle, a place where homeless people can have a cup of coffee and food in a warm, dry place. Showers, laundry facilities, and restrooms are also available.
Volunteers are always welcome and needed. For information, please contact Kristi Webber, Compass Housing Alliance, by e-mail or phone, 206-357-3108.
'Request for investment' for new citizens program
Woman with Am. flagThe Seattle Human Services Department has issued a "request for investment" (RFI) to provide naturalization assistance for low-income immigrants and refugees who live in Seattle and King County. Approximately $1.1 million is available to assist refugees and immigrants to obtain U.S. citizenship. The deadline to submit applications is 5 p.m., July 30. For more information or for paper copies of the RFI, please contact Ann-Margaret Webb, Seattle Human Services Department, at or 206-615-1112 or visit the department's RFI Web site.

New child care center in SE Seattle

Tiny Tots logoWith the help of $92,000 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding in 2000, Tiny Tots Development Center recently completed a new child care building in southeast Seattle. A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on June 17.
The two-story building has 5,000 square feet for more than 30 preschool children. Most of the children will be from low- and moderate-income families. Additional CDBG funding for construction was provided through the Rainier Valley Community Development Fund. For more information about the Community Development Block Grant program, please visit this Web site.
Safe Havens visitation center stays open
The Seattle Human Services Department's Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Prevention division signed a contract in June with the city of Kent to invest $30,000 for safe visitations for Seattle residents affected by domestic violence. The visits are generally court ordered, and Seattle residents make up about 20% of the usage of this program. This contract, which expires at the end of 2010, helped ensure that Safe Havens will stay open through the end of the year.   
Encore! a Web site for people 50+
Seniors recreationEncore! is a new Web site that provides valuable online information and resources on community resources, work, money, arts, recreation, safety, health, fitness, and more. The Mayor's Office for Senior Citizens collaborated with Seattle's Department of Information Technology to create the site. Your feedback would be appreciated. Go to and click on the tabs on the left side. E-mail your comments to
Food banks and meals programs
Man with mealEach year, the Seattle Human Services Department invests in meal and food bank programs to feed people who are homeless, homebound or low-income. For a list of food banks in Seattle and King County, click here. For meals programs, see the hot meal resource directory. If you're interested in providing meals to hungry and homeless people see this newly designed guide.

Refugee demographics


Two recent reports provide demographic data that will inform the delivery of human services to refugees. The first report from the Department of State Worldwide Refugee Processing System gives a breakdown of refugee arrivals to Washington state by city and country of origin. The report shows that from October 2009 to April 2010, 800 new arrivals have resettled in Seattle - nearly half of the statewide total. Of those arrivals, most came from Burma (191), Bhutan (184), and Iraq (161).


The second report from the U.S. Office of Refugee resettlement provides an overview of refugee service delivery in the region and the challenges of the economic downturn, and changes in the numbers and complexity of refugee populations.  

Number of children in poverty on the rise
The 2010 Child and Youth Well-Being Index is an analysis by the Foundation for Child Development. Among other findings, the report shows that the number of children living in poverty this year in the U.S. will climb to 22 percent, the highest in two decades. In 2006, nearly 17 percent of children were living in poverty, and the recession could wipe out virtually all economic progress for children since 1975 when the foundation began analyzing data.
The index tracks 28 key statistics that include health insurance coverage, parents' employment, infant mortality, and preschool enrollment. The report projects that the percentage of children living in families with an "insecure" source of food has risen from 17 percent in 2007 to 18 percent in 2010, an increase of 750,000 children. Up to 500,000 children may be homeless this year. 

Public Health Facebook page


Visit the new Facebook page for Public Health - Seattle & King County to get the most interesting, useful, and timely information about critical health and wellness issues.

In This Issue
New director
Upward Bound
Summer jobs
Encampment policy
Shelter volunteers
New citizens RFI
New child care center
Safe Havens stays open
Encore! Web site
Emergency food info
Refugee demographics
Children and poverty
Public Health Facebook
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Contact Information
Life Lines is published by the City of Seattle's Human Services Department (HSD). The mission of the department is to connect people with resources and solutions during times of need so we can all live, learn, work and take part in strong, healthy communities. We welcome your comments. Visit us on the Web for more information. For more timely or breaking news visit our new blog, Human Interests. If you have questions, please contact David Takami, HSD, at or 206-684-0253.