I read this article about the shooting at the Lamp Lodge that happened yesterday morning. Because I know several of the tenants (see the Home Walk pictures from November – taken in front of The Lamp Lodge) I am urgently trying to find out who was involved.
Some facts that have been blurred
The Lamp Lodge is not a hotel, it used to be a hotel over 100 years ago and less than 30 years ago was renovated into 50 efficiency and one bedroom apartments with a tiny kitchen, toilet and showers in each unit. For over a year my office was apt 110 – so trust that I know my facts here.
“The Lodge”, as it is called by residents and locals, houses formerly homeless adults – most of whom have mental health and substance abuse issues. 14 of the units are “Shelter Plus Care Section 8” apartments.
There is an on sight manager and case managers installed in the building offering services but nothing is mandatory. Residents at The Lodge have stayed as long as 17 years although the average stay is less than five years. Once stability is established by a tenant of The Lodge it is hard to move because of financial constrictions. 90% of the tenants living there while I worked there were on SSI alone, 2 residents had absolutely no income, and three of them also held outside employment on a part time basis.
LAMP COMMUNITY is the agency that will be highlighted in the upcoming movie “The Soloist” with Jamie Foxx portraying Nathaniel. Lamp was created by two dynamic individuals, the surviving founder being Mollie Lowrey.
Mollie is no longer with Lamp Community and when she left, I feel the vision and the mission of the agency began to crumble. It began as an agency that met people “where they were at” and offered them services that they were free to decline without being shut out of the other benefits of the programs. Lamp has the only public toilets and showers on Skid ROw with adjoining laundry facilities. There is a drop in center, day center, shelters and long term residences. Lamp is also contracted to do some case management for A Community of Friends.