The Downtown Partnership just released this eblast about a plan for dealing with downtown panhandlers:
Greetings, and thank you for your continued support of downtown Dayton. We at the Downtown Dayton Partnership hope you’re enjoying the warm weather and everything downtown has to offer this summer.
I wanted to take a minute to let you know about an initiative we’re spearheading to address panhandling issues. I know this has been a concern not only in our downtown community, but across the region and cities nationwide. We have been working with the United Way of Greater Dayton, the City of Dayton, Montgomery County (Health and Human Services), and several other supporting agencies to create a comprehensive campaign that will educate the public about the services these organizations provide, and encourages donations to these agencies, rather than individuals.
Real Change Dayton is a collaborative awareness program that educates the public that there’s a better way to give if they truly want to help those in need, and to help ensure those in need receive emergency and long-term services. We realize this is A solution and not THE solution to address the larger issues behind panhandling. We want to reinforce the idea that our community’s generosity better serves those who are truly in need when directed to social service agencies in our community.
On Wednesday, June 21, we will publicly introduce the Real Change Dayton campaign. Components of the campaign include marketing materials and options for channeling donations to more appropriate avenues.
- Posters, business-sized cards, and brochures will be distributed with information about Real Change Dayton to help spread the word. One set of cards includes information on ways to donate to Real Change Dayton. The other set can be given directly to those in need; it includes the United Way’s HelpLine and other information on obtaining services. We plan to distribute these materials to our downtown businesses (in particular our first-floor and consumer-based businesses) for them to share with their staff and customers.Let us know if you would like this information for display or distribution.
- A new website, www.RealChangeDayton.org, will be the hub for information, highlighting local nonprofit and social service organizations and the services they provide to those in need.
- Vibrantly wrapped retired parking meters will serve as collection sites for those who wish to make a monetary donation. Look for them in heavy pedestrian-traveled areas downtown.
- A new text-to-give method provides a way to make mobile donations. All donations collected via meters and digital campaigns will be directed to United Way of the Greater Dayton Area and invested in program that focus on financial stability, positive health outcomes, and emergency services.
If you have any questions at all, please give me a call. Thank you once again for your support of downtown!
Sandra K. Gudorf
President, Downtown Dayton Partnership