Stand Down 2017

 It was remarkably calm this year in the 26th year of the Homeless Stand Down in Cleveland.  Handson NEO does a good job with staging this event.  The Stand Down was at Cleveland Public Hall and featured 43 social service providers and a breakfast, a hot meal and a bag lunch.  There was a special section for veterans and a ton of donated boots, coats and socks distributed.  There were tons of medical groups led by Medworks and Care Alliance.  There were haircuts and the fantastic Cleveland Photographic Society who gave out portraits to the guests.  Here are some photos from the event.  







by Brian Davis

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Stand Down 2017 Flyer

Here is the flyer that you can print out to distribute

The Homeless Stand Down is an all day service fair for homeless people in Cleveland.  There are meals and entertainment, haircuts and medical services.  All the local homeless service providers participate and it is a great event organized by HandsOn NEO. This is twenty-sixth of the Stand Downs in Cleveland.

Brian Davis

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Posted a Video to Celebrate 25 Years of Stand Down

Ken Payton holding the award from Handson NEO to celebrate 25 years of the Homeless Stand Down

We posted a video of the slide show at the Annual Meeting to celebrate 25 years of the Homeless Stand Down.  It shows all the different venues and partners that put on this amazing event every year. 


Brian Davis

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Stand Down Cleveland Marks 25 Years

Cleveland was the first city in the United States to do a joint Homeless Stand Down serving veterans and non-veteran homeless individuals.  Stand Down is a military term for a rest period after a battle, and the Stand Downs starting in San Diego were traditionally reserved for veterans.  We did the first Stand Down for any homeless person 25 years ago.  This does not mean that we do not have a section reserved for vets every year at the Stand Down. 

We have updated our webpage to reflect the 25th anniversary of the Stand Down with a flyer for distribution on our webpage.  Here is the flyer.  If you are interested in volunteering for the Stand Down contact HandsOn NEO at 216-432-9390.  If you can help with transporting homeless people to the Stand Down in January contact Ken at NEOCH.  We want this Stand Down to be the best yet.

Brian Davis

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Time to Think About Stand Down 2016

It is a beautiful day in Cleveland, but the bad days of winter are just around the corner.  Remember the unofficial motto of Cleveland is "at least its not snowing."   Plans for the 2016 Homeless Stand Down are underway. 

The Homeless Stand Down is set for January 23, 2016 at Cleveland Public Auditorium.  Typically 1,200 to 1,800 homeless and very low income people attend the Homeless Stand Down.  We have placed the flyer on our Stand Down page. There are pictures from past Stand Downs and a separate history of the Stand Down on our website.

In addition to marking the date, you can volunteer to help out by contacting HandsOn NEO who oversees the Stand Down.  You can get your religious congregation involved in making bagged lunches or preparing hygiene kits.  Groups can sign up to assist with collecting clothing and winter items to distribute. 

NEOCH is in charge of helping with transportation to the event.  Ken is looking for help from church groups, non-profits or others who can pick up and transport homeless people from the shelters to Public Hall.  There are 19 shelters and only a few have their own transportation available.  There is actually one fewer shelter that has their own van with the changes that took place at Family Promise.  Contact Ken by calling NEOCH 432-0540 ext. 106 or printing out the form and returning it to NEOCH. 

Thanks in advance for all your help.

Brian Davis

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Final Numbers from Homeless Stand Down

from the January 24, 2015 event includes: 

  • 1,554 guests served including 308 Veterans, 56 families and 104 children. 
  • 277 guests received haircuts
  • 167 guests received foot care
  • Close to 400 portraits for guests
  • Nearly 400 rides were coordinated for guests
  • More than 1,300 guests shopped for basic need items, warm winter clothing and military surplus
  • 845 guests enjoyed a cold breakfast and 824 guests enjoyed a hot lunch
  • More than 120 glucose screenings
  • 54 medical/dental appointments scheduled
  • 1,000s of people receiving access to medicaid, benefits, education, mental health, housing, and employment services

Impact from the January 31, 2015 CareVan events includes:  

  • 4 permanent supportive housing units for the chronically homeless provided with basic need items
  • 1 supportive, family housing facility provided with basic need items
  • In total over 200 residents from these facilities were served with food, basic need items and basic medical/vision checks

We have put together a page on the Homeless Stand Down and a History of the Homeless Stand Down here.

If you want more information on the Homeless Stand Down or volunteer opportunities go to Hands On Northeast Ohio

Brian Davis

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Homeless Stand Down 2015

Over 1,500 people including 300 veterans attended the Stand Down today.  It was a very well run and smooth operation thanks to Hands On NEO.  There was an extensive transportation system thanks to Ken from the NEOCH staff.  There were residents of nearly every shelter in Cleveland.  Many social service providers attended including the Department of Aging, Legal Aid Society and the Salvation Army. 

They gave away thousands of pairs of boots and provided over a thousand meals.  The Food Bank were passing out literature and chapstick while First Call for Help talked about all the things they do to assist.  There were foot doctors, eye doctors and people signing the guests up for Medicaid.  There was an entire section for veterans and the Cleveland Photographic society did portraits of hundreds.

It was a really nice event and we posted the first gallery of images on the front page of our website.  The Plain Dealer also posted a nice gallery on their website here.  WKYC and WEWS all showed up to feature the story.  There were 400 volunteers including congregations who put together bag lunches or hygiene kits. 

NEOCH did a survey of some of the participants to ask them about their new year's resolution and their priorities to solve homelessness.  We will publish the resultsin the upcoming Street Chronicle. In the evening we gave out winter socks and thermal hoodies at the Metanoia Project.  This was part of the Community West Foundation Socks Plus campaign.  Community West Staff went out on Outreach and found that most of the people that they met complained that they never could keep their feet warm in the winter.  The Foundation agreed to give the Coalition funding to expand our blanket drive with winter socks and boots.  We did not want to compete against the Stand Down so we picked out items for Stand Down evening that they probably did not get at the Stand Down.  Today we gave really nice Thermal Socks and zip up hoodies with a thermal lining as part of the Community West Socks Plus campaign. We will give out additional items over the next month to keep people warm and safe all thanks to Community West Foundation.

How Can I Volunteer for the Homeless Stand Down?

Our partners over at HandsOn NEO are looking for help with volunteering over at the Homeless Stand Down.  Here are the Volunteer Needs:

Homeless Stand Down 2015 Donation Sorting:

  • Various days/evenings/weekends Mid -December-January 22nd (Sign up to follow)
  • Veteran's supplies donation sorting - various dates, late December/Early January (location tbd)
  • Great for youth and families
  • Great for groups of 5-10 individuals

Homeless Stand Down Setup:

  • Friday, January 23rd 10am-5pm (multiple volunteer shifts) @ Cleveland Public Auditorium 
  • Help setup donations, decorate, and organize supplies
  • Great for groups of 10+ individuals
  • Drivers with large capacity vehicles are needed for donation transporting to Stand Down site

Homeless Stand Down 2015:

  • Saturday, January 24th, 7am-3pm @ Cleveland Public Auditorium 
  • Positions include- 
  1. Personal Shoppers to help guest find basic need items
  2. Distribution Managers helping organize donations
  3. Volunteer Guardians/Security 
  4. Kids area volunteers
  • Great for groups of 5-20 individuals  
  • Limited opportunities for teen volunteers. 16 and up only. No other youth volunteers are allowed. 

Homeless Stand Down 2015 CareVan Setup:

  • The week of January 25, 5:30pm-8:00pm (location tbd)
  • Help sort and organize donations 
  • Great for groups of 5-10 individuals

Homeless Stand Down 2015 CareVan Days:

  • Saturday, January 31st and Sunday, February 1st 9am-2pm 
  • Drive a van, serve a meal, hand out donations, etc.
  • Great for groups of 4-7 individuals 
  • Drivers with large capacity vehicles  are needed for donation transporting to CareVan sites

Click here to register for HSD volunteer positions. Go to the January calendar on the HandsOn NEO website.

***Volunteer registration is a first come, first served opportunity

***All volunteers MUST be signed up through the HandsOn website. There will be NO walk up volunteers allowed

***There will be Stand Down Pre-Event Overviews for 2015 volunteers. These Pre-Event Overviews are optional. You will receive email confirmations and appropriate instructions prior to the event. Stand Down volunteers DO NOT have to attend a HandsOn NEO volunteer orientation to participate. 

Call for entertainment volunteers! We are looking for entertainment for the 2015 Homeless Stand Down. This includes main stage performers, roving entertainment (caricatures, jugglers, drum circles, etc.) and kids area entertainment (face painting, puppets, etc.) Click here to express interest via a survey monkey questionnaire.

 Other specialized positions: We are looking for spiritual leaders from different faiths to be onsite to support those at the event. We are also looking for Spanish speakers to serve as translators. Finally, we are looking for licensed massage therapists to be onsite for back or hand massages. Interested parties should email HSD (at) handsonneo (dot) org.

Are you part of a group who wants to volunteer? Can 216-432-9390 or email HSD(at) handsonneo(dot)org for group registration.

You must use the HandsOn NEO website to volunteer, and it is an extremely rewarding experience. 

Brian Davis

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Homeless Stand Down Looking for Donations

From our Friends over at HandsOn NEO, they are looking for help with the January 2015 Homeless Stand Down

Most Pressing Donation Needs:

The Homeless Stand Down inventories homeless guests from local shelters each fall to assess current donation needs for the Stand Down. Based on those surveys, we are looking for the following donations:

(1) All donations should be approved by HandsOn Northeast Ohio either by email or phone. Please email hsd(at)handsonneo(dot)org with your pledge to donate before January 5, 2015. 

(2) The HSD is a dignity affirming event, as such, all donations should be new or nearly new. WE WILL NOT BE ACCEPTING GENERAL CLOTHING ITEMS UNLESS STATED BELOW

(3) Below is a list of desired in-kind donations. Goals for the items are based on both the Stand Down and CareVan events

  • New or Gently Used Winter Boots *Goal 1,100 (700 men and 400 women)  Men's sizes 10-14 **Various Women Sizes
  • Winter Coats *Goal 1200 (700 men and 500 women)  Men Sizes XL, 2XL, 3XL, 4XL
  • New Underwear *Goal 2,800 (1,800 men and 1,000 women).  Priority for Men's underwear (should be mostly boxer or boxer briefs) sizes M, L and XL
  • Waterproof Gloves *Goal 1,300 pair
  • Hooded Sweatshirts *Goal 1,800 **Men/Women's sizes XL, 2XL, 3XL, 4XL
  • Winter Hats *Goal 1,300
  • Men's Athletic Socks *Goal 2,900

* Hygiene kits (Personal Care Kits) *Goal1,600 (1,000 male and 600 female)
Preference is that they come pre-assembled by gender in bag (gallon bags or other large freezer bags work great)
   Kits include:
    o Shampoo and conditioner (full size) 
    o Bar of Soap
    o Washcloth
    o Toothbrush and Toothpaste
    o Shaving cream and Razor (Men)
    o Tampons & Pads (Women)
    o Other additional items if desired: floss, deodorant, antibacterial wipes,       
       mouthwash, nail file/clippers, comb/brush, hair ties, etc...

* Cleaning Kits   *Goal of 300     
 Kits include:
    o Cleaning bucket (for use and to hold kits)
    o Sponges
    o Paper Towels
    o All Purpose Cleaning Solutions
    o Dish Soap
    o Laundry Detergent
    o Dryer Sheets

* Bagged Lunch   *Goal of 1,000        
    o Sandwich (PB&J) or Crackers and Tuna
    o Whole Fresh Fruit (apple, orange, pear)
    o Granola Bar
    o 100% Fruit Juice
    o Veggie Sticks
    o Bag of Chips
    o Cookie

* Diapers and wipes (various sizes)
* Cloth Bags/Reusable large shopping bags 

Donation drop dates (location will be confirmed by 12/12)

Sunday, December 21 9:00 a.m. - 11:00 p.m. 

Tuesday, December 23 5:30 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. 

Sunday, December 28 1:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. 

Sunday, January 4 1:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. 

Saturday, January 10 1:00 p.m.  - 3:30 p.m. 

Sunday, January 11 1:00 p.m.  - 3:30 p.m. 

Saturday, January 17 1:00 p.m.  - 3:30 p.m. 

Sunday, January 18 1:00 p.m.  - 3:30 p.m. 

MLK Day -Monday, January 19 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 

MLK Day -Monday, January 19 5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. 

Tuesday, January 20 5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. Last Donation Drop Pre-Stand Down

***Please be sure to make arrangements to store donations until the specified drop off dates/times or contact our offices.
***All monetary and in-kind donations to the Homeless Stand Down are tax deductible and you will receive a thank you letter/receipt of your donation.

Thank you for continued support of the Homeless Stand Down. 

Please email your donation pledge of donations to HSD(at)HandsOnNEO(dot)org

All checks must be made out to:

HandsOn Northeast Ohio"  with the 
"Homeless Stand Down 2015" in the memo and should be mailed to:
HandsOn Northeast Ohio
P.O. Box 91183
Cleveland, Ohio 44101

We will post their volunteer needs on Tuesday.

Stand Down Coming Soon

January 25 at Public Hall--Homeless Stand Down 2014.

We have all the volunteers that we need.  We have a transportation system set up for homeless people to get to the event.  We have food, medical,  and entertainment ready for the guests. 

All we need now is you to send homeless people to the event to get access to the overwhelming number of services available.  We have plans for as many as 1,500 people to attend.

Brian Davis

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HandsOn NEO is Collecting Stuff for Stand Down 2014

The 23rd Homeless Stand Down will take place Saturday, January 25 at Cleveland Public Auditorium from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.  This event provides members of the homeless community and those facing financial and housing uncertainty with medical and social services to assess and assist those in critical need.  Breakfast and lunch, warm winter clothing, coats, boots, personal hygiene items, and compassion are available to attendees as donations permit.  

Beginning this Sunday, January 5 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., Pilgrim Congregational United Church of Christ, located at 2592 W. 14th Street, Cleveland, OH 44113, will be the central drop off location. 

Future dates:

January 11-12, 18-19                            1:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Monday, January 20                              10:00 a.m. - Noon; 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.

January 21-23                                       5:30 - 7:30 p.m.

 * Friday, January 24 & Saturday, January 25 donations accepted at:

   Cleveland Public Auditorium, 500 Lakeside Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44114

 Critical needs: 

  •  BOOTS
  • PERSONAL HYGIENE ITEMS (Toothbrush, toothpaste, wash cloths, deodarant, shampoo, disposable razors, feminine hygiene products...)

Please visit to view volunteer opportunities throughout the months of January and February in support of the Stand Down.  

Cosponsors of the Homeless Stand Down include NEOCH, Cleveland Food Bank, Cleveland Photographic Society, Cleveland Department of Public Health, Luteran Metropolitan Ministries, Dept. of Veterans Administration, and HandsOn NEO.

From the HandsOn NEO Press Release

Homeless Stand Down 2013

Another successful homeless Stand Down.   This year the all day service fair took place at Public Auditorium in Downtown Cleveland.  This is the 22 year of this event that serves both veterans and non-veteran homeless people.  They served at least 1,200 people this year and around 200 of those individuals were veterans.  WKYC had a really nice report on the event both yesterday and today.  The Channel 3 story featured our own William Gilmore and our Street Voices speaker Don Messitt who have attended many of these events. (Update: Fox 8 also had a nice story about Don Messit.)   Handson Northeast Ohio took over the event two years ago and did a great job with the event.  Public Auditorium was a much bigger facility and was a better place to hold the event.  Parking was rough, but it was a great event.  Parking was probably rough because there were so many volunteers and social service providers present that it made such a great event for homeless people.  This was probably the largest medical support staff of any of the 21 previous Stand Downs. 

One of the most popular items was the portraits that the Cleveland Photographic Society take of homeless people.   This was probably the most well documented Stand Downs in our history with dozens of photographers at the event.  There was food donated, hygiene kits, job training, and a large number of services for veterans.  The donated items for veterans disappeared quickly because so many veterans showed up.   Larry Davis from NEOCH handled transportation, and there were dozens of vans transporting families, individuals and couples to Public Auditorium.  Handson is doing a mobile Stand Down over the next week delivering goods and services to people living in the shelters.  

Brian Davis

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