The City of Portland recently began using a mobile and online platform to raise money for its panhandling-to-work pilot program, Portland Opportunity Crew. The City entered into an agreement with MobileCause to afford citizens the opportunity to support the program with monetary donations by texting CREW to 91999 or donating online via the City’s website. Citizens can make a one-time or recurring donation. Other cities that have launched similar programs have also offered citizens mobile and online ways in which to donate to the program and have had success in raising funds to support and expand its operation.
The Time & Temperature Building, thanks to the Law Offices of Joe Bornstein, will also feature this new way to support the Portland Opportunity Crew program beginning this Friday and throughout the weekend by displaying TEXT CREW on the electronic sign. Anyone who wishes to know what the sign is promoting can visit www.portlandtimetemp.com to learn more.
The City also plans to use the MobileCause platform to raise money for its various Parks and Recreation programs.
About Portland Opportunity Crew
The Portland Opportunity Crew is a pilot program building on the successes several other cities have had such as in Albuquerque, New Mexico and San Jose, California. The program offers panhandlers the opportunity to earn money to cleanup public areas and links them with needed services, such as job training and support. Workers will pick up trash and beautify the city's parks and trails, primarily on the peninsula. Program participants will be paid minimum wage, which in Portland is $10.68 an hour, at the end of each shift.
The City's Social Services Division is working with the City's Parks Division to run the program. It will operate two days a week for approximately 36 weeks from April/May through November, and on each day up to five people will be hired. The City is partnering with local companies to link participants with additional services such as job training and employment support.