CAPE HOPE (Cape May County, NJ) is a faith-based advocacy organization focusing on homelessness, and the prevention of homelessness, to single adults, children, families, and the elderly of Cape May County.
Cape May County is in the southernmost part of New Jersey. It is best known for its 30 miles of beautiful beaches and multi-million dollar homes along the Atlantic Ocean & Delaware Bay from Ocean City to Cape May.
Unfortunately this largely tourist area also claims a significant population of adults and children who are homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless. They include adults, many with children; teenagers, some with children; and a growing elderly population. Cape May County makes Warming Shelters available only during Code Blue (32 degrees regardless of precipitation).
Cape Hope consists of a Board of Directors and volunteers who assist us in all that we do. We conduct community meetings once a month to which the public is invited to learn, offer input and assistance to Cape Hope. No one associated with Cape Hope receives any compensation. Because of this, Cape Hope has minimal administrative expenses.
While Cape Hope remains committed to providing personal attention and immediate assistance to all who are homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless, one of our criteria is that these individuals must desire to overcome the physical, emotional and financial barriers keeping them from permanent, sustainable housing.
Guided by God’s word and inspired by God’s spirit to love our neighbor as ourselves, Cape Hope offers help to those desiring to overcome the physical, emotional and financial barriers that keep them from permanent housing and guide them to achieve their goals to re-enter the community.
We begin by building and fostering relationships of mutual respect with county and state agencies as well as working with other community organizations to create a setting of compassion and service.
“‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment; and the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’
Matthew 22:37-39 NKJV
Cape Hope’s long-term goal is to move the homeless persons into safe, stable transitional housing where they will learn the skills to advance into permanent, sustainable housing. This is an ongoing project that takes lots of money, and lots of time. While we continue to focus heavily on this objective, we also continue to have the daily recurring homeless issues which demand immediate attention.
1.Provide food, clothing and supplies.
2. Help to navigate available services such as medical, educational, child care, and addiction recovery.
3. Initiate pilot programs like the ones in 2017-2019, a result of grants, where we help families transition into permanent housing OR we assist with one-time payments.
4. Distribute Blessing Bags every two weeks to the homeless; these bags contain toiletries, personal care items, and seasonal items like warm hats, socks and gloves in winter.
5. Develop strong relationships with agencies and organizations that also target homelessness in the County.
6. Diligently attempt to create community awareness of the homeless issues by working with local newspapers, county and state agencies, law enforcement, churches, and various private individuals.
7. Offer ongoing moral and spiritual support to all of our homeless clients.
(Note: Our funding comes from a variety of sources: Pancake Breakfasts, Community Sponsored Events, Crowd-Rise; Outreach to Local Churches and Businesses; Donations from individuals and organizations; and Grants.)
Cape Hope Family Support Grant
Cape Hope Homeless Prevention Grant
Operation 1923- Homeless Pregnant Women program
Set Free- 30 days Emergency Housing for those recently released from incarceration and unable to receive housing assistance through Social Services
Emergency Housing- Up to 2 weeks of housing