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The Worcester PIP Shelter has been providing emergency shelter, food, clothing and medical care to homeless people since 1975. For many, PIP has meant the difference between life and death. For some, PIP has been the beginning of a new, sober and meaningful life.

From the President’s Desk

As the temperature outside remained below freezing, with a biting wind for much of January, a comment made to me by PIP Exectuive Director Buddy Brousseau struck home. “The provision of food and shelter is healthcare.

While reviewing this issue of our newsletter, which is focused on health care and the importance of providing it to the less fortunate in our society, I have become even more convinced of the absolute necessity of the PIP Shelter in our community.

There are a myriad of obstacles relative to providing effective health care to the homeless, with the number one being scarce resources. Through the collaborative efforts of PIPĀ and Community Health Link we are now able to provide only about 9 hours of clinic time weekly and 20 hours of care provided by a nurse and dentist practitioner. While it is a start, keep in mind that this limited assistance attempts to care for over 3000 people annually who suffer from such diverse ailments as HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, diabetes, chronic bronchitis, frostbite, adult acne and pneumonia. While we are thankful to be able to provide these minimal resources, I shudder to think what would happen if the PIP shelter, and the care it provides, didn’t exist.

Due to recent budget cuts, state-sponsored health care for the homeless could be eliminated as early as April 1. That means that the meager, but very necessary, medical treatment that we’re now providing will cease unless we can somehow secure additional revenues before that deadline. With the current slow economy, and the slashing of public assistance programs, it has now become imperative, more than ever, to look to corporate funding and private contributions to keep the good work of the PIP shelter going strong. Without that assistance, it may ultimately mean that the only health care we will be able to provide in the future is food and shelter.

– Brian M. Chandley
President

Helping People in Peril since 1975
701 Main Street Worcester, MA