BLAKESLEE, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — “I see a lot of dedication from them. They understand this is their second opportunity in life to better themselves. To better their community,” Officer Cruz from the Municipal Authority Police Department said.
It’s been three months since the Pocono 3C Program started. The program presents those who are homeless or are at risk of becoming homeless with an opportunity to help beautify Monroe County by picking up trash that is left along the side of the roads. The clients work three days a week and at the end of the day, they are paid fifty dollars.
“They don’t need an ID, they don’t need to fill out an application for employment. It’s to really get them to increase their self-worth, to build up their confidence, and to give them the tools necessary to go out and apply for full-time employment,” Kate Croll, the case manager at Street to Feet Outreach Center, said.
Croll who assists homeless people and involves them in programs such as Pocono 3C, says the program has already made an impact on people’s lives.
“We’ve seen a change in their personalities overall. They are proud of themselves, they’re proud of each other,” she said.
In the past three months, clients removed nearly 1,600 bags of litter and enough tires that if you stacked them up they would be three times as high as the Lehigh Valley Hospital Pocono building. The program has 44 participants and has housed 10 people. One man, who wishes to remain anonymous, was homeless for three years. He is now employed by the Monroe County Waste Authority as a result of the program.
“He’s an individual who has been homeless for a very long time and didn’t have a lot of self-worth and pride and stuff like that. And this program has helped him get back on his feet, gain some self-respect. And now he’s secured full-time employment in Stroudsburg,” Jack Morris, a case manager at Street to Feet Outreach Center, said.
That person now has a home and was able to buy a car. Those at the Pocono 3C Program hope to see other clients get back on their feet and succeed like he has.