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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

Chaplains Regina and Steve Weller Find Homeless a Place

Chaplains Steven and Regina Weller

Chaplains Steven and Regina Weller

They ring the bell, they break the tape, they finish first, they are the Number One in placing homeless in Los Angeles… and one does not know all who do this work but odds are that the Wellers — Chaplains Regina and Steve — pastors of the Foursquare Church in Venice, chaplains of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Homeless Task Force will “out task” all others in Los Angeles.

Note: Homelessness in Venice went down 11.6 percent January 2015 to January 2016. Should the Wellers receive the thank you? It went up in CD11  7.2 percent.

They have no organization, no crew, no bureaucracy. They also have no money. Monies are donated by readers. They have no fund raisers. The Wellers sometimes use their pension monies when necessary. Councilman Mike Bonin said in March that the Wellers would be awarded $50,000 (for fiscal year starting in July) but the Wellers have not seen a penny of that. They just go out with the LAPD once or twice a week and pick up needy, willing souls off the street, get them permanent supportive housing.  They just gently touch these needy souls, and change their lives completely and probably forever, but no one knows the latter.

Maybe the Wellers will see one who just needs to go home to his/her family. Family is called to make sure there is support on the other end, bus ticket is purchased, along with food for the ride.

Those who are addicted cannot be placed until they have detoxed. The Wellers provide funds for those who are ready to go to detox and then follow up with supportive housing after the detox.

Last year the two of them placed 212. St. Joseph’s placed 52 total in a couple of years and with a budget of millions. Ten million this year. Regina was asked about recidivism and she answered that she had one person come back to the beach and another was questionable at the time … but that was the total for all the years they had placed people.

Record for this year

From January to present the combined efforts of Venice Foursquare Chaplains and LAPD officers from Venice Beach Detail and Wilshire Division placed a total of 68 homeless individuals into safe haven:

53 -  into permanent housing

10  – greyhound bus return home to families of origin

  5  - into medical detox

Of the 68 placed:

3 were blind, 2 were amputees, 1 was a deaf mute, 12 were mental health consumers, 5 were veterans, 1 woman was 8 months pregnant, and 2 were families with children.

After being housed, an elderly woman later entered UCLA Hospital ICU and passed away of respiratory failure.   Regina  made the death notification to family in Romania, and was available for the woman’s son when he came to Los Angeles to collect his mother’s belongings.

Those with disabilities present more challenges.  Regina has supplied a story for next week, but perhaps, she can be coaxed to write the story about how she got Brad Neal to donate a trailer from his construction site for a blind man she was relocating to the Inland Empire area.  One has to be creative in her business.  Think she got Neal to deliver the trailer too.

If you want to donate, drop a coin in the mail shot at the Foursquare church, 1400 Riviera Ave.  If you want to write a check, address it to Foursquare Chaplains, 1400 Riviera Ave., Venice 90291.  Make checks payable to Foursquare Chaplains.

Comments (2)

  1. Shelly (& Justin)

    Justin and I will never forget u Steve. I still wear the Jean jacket your wife gave me. We love you. My moms sending a card for the holidays. Sincerely, Shelly

  2. Shelly (& Justin)

    Hi Steve! No, not notification of our wedding.. (we’ll still pay for ur ticket tho if u want to come visit!) ..My mom wants to talk to u. She’s really bn on me about trying to reach u so please call her when u have a chance. (715)279-2776 is her cell, (715)233-1784 is her at work where she practically lives so feel free to call her anytime (we’re central time zone.) My cells (715)642-2128 and Justins always working as well but u can reach him at the email listed above. Hope all is well. Shelly Storm

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