A Man Crawled Into A Dumpster

43648586_10155067784098039_9207806800496164864_nSounds like a joke set-up but it’s not. Last month, I witnessed a guy get into a dumpster and close the lid. He didn’t come out. After 30 minutes, I called the police thinking what if he was sick, wounded, dying? Two squad cars responded within 5 minutes and he turned out to be none of those. But he was clearly disheveled, disturbed and in trouble. This incident weighed on my heart. How does one get to such a low point in life as to seek refuge in a dumpster? More importantly, what could I or anyone do to help? The mental health system continues to be overwhelmed. Police are getting special training in counseling and intervention. Street drugs have become the norm. Homelessness has arrived at our doorstep. So again, what can be done to help? I called back the police to thank them for their quick response and to ask what they suggest if a citizen wants to help in prevention or solution? The answer? 211. Ever hear of it? Me neither. Apparently, a lot of folks don’t know about it including my neighbors, my dentist, his assistant and pretty much anyone I’ve talked with in the last few weeks. 211 is the 911 for resources. Everything from suicide to abuse to hunger to shelter to senior needs and paying bills. It’s a clearinghouse for 50k programs and over 3k agencies across the nation and Canada. Anyone can call the 211 hotline and talk to an operator who is trained to listen and provide appropriate connections. Part of the 211 manifesto reads: WE BELIEVE in the transformative power of collective action. So do I. Please share this number. Visit 211.org to learn more about services and volunteering opportunities in your local community. Shine the light!

Here’s the Facebook page for the Oregon area.

Clear the Barriers

Your TaskThis is a special day for me and I celebrate it with you by sharing what is closest to my heart. Clearing the way to what blocks us from love is a journey within that each of us must discover – but life offers teachers along the way. Here’s a toast to all of those teachers in their varied shapes and sizes. And here’s to breaking through barriers. See you on the flip side! Click here to read about my two very special teachers and learn about an organization that is cutting through barriers in urban territory.

The Clear Gift of Humor

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SPLASH, Eugene Levy, 1984, (c)Buena Vista Pictures

What a week I’m having! If 2017 has been as full of angst for you as it has been for most of us, you’ll enjoy the suggestions in my December Enews. This issue features a nod to laughter, seasonal donation opportunity, help from a fellow blogger, favorite product tip and a first time offer for 30% OFF A Clear Place Wisdom Cards. Here’s to lightening the load with humor … and a bright holiday for all! View the good stuff now.

The Energy of Passion

light-brain_132796_4Find out why passion matters and view examples of two gals on opposite corners of the country who prove it’s never too late to explore your own. Also, get a neat repurposing packing tip and learn about a nonprofit whose mission combines education, recycling and art around the globe. View A Clear News November and Happy Thanksgiving!

Clear News Feb 2016

IMG_20160207_150114Learn about the queen of spices and how you can support efforts by Heifer Intl to raise its farmers out of poverty; peek inside a $20k home designed by Rural Studio; get an online tool that helps you determine the dollar value of your stuff; listen to my top picks for music guaranteed to put a wiggle in your clearing out tasks … and more. View Clear Ways to A Better World – February 2016. Enjoy!

New Format for ACP Clear News

UntitledChallenge: Find a better way to present multiple topics, links and graphics on one page that all open easily with mobile devices. It needs to look good and inspire action. Oh … it should also have a personal vibe and consistent quality. Something that’s professional yet warm and, of course, always clear in voice and message.  Result: Today I launch my latest Clear News format … thanks to MailChimp and lots of pots of jasmine tea. Hope you enjoy it!

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Where Stuff Matters

a clear placeI just couldn’t share enough about this wonderful organization, so here’s a follow up to last week’s feature. Community Warehouse Communications Director,  Rena Satre Meloy, took time from her busy schedule yesterday to give me the inside view of this bustling nonprofit.  The warehouse was buzzing during my entire visit – a continual stream of donations coming in and going out. And just like their Tualatin location, everything was done with efficiency and a smile. Adjacent to the warehouse, we toured the Estate Store and as at their SW branch, I was impressed with the organization and clean and attractive displays. And such diverse items! Everything from a Murano glass chandelier to a nautical folding screen to a vintage doll complete with clothes and trunk. All at bargain prices with proceeds supporting the CW programs. Rena shared that an average of 40 families a week are outfitted with everything they need to set up house. An additional 20 families are serviced weekly at the Tualatin location. It’s amazing how much work can be accomplished by so few when the hearts are dedicated. Thank you, Rena, for being such a warm ambassador for a worthy and much needed cause. You guys are the real deal.

DONATE, SHOP & SUPPORT – Be mindful of stuff  and get it/bring it where it matters. CW Estate Stores are open 7 days a week. Click here for address and hours. Watch here for more updates and ideas on helping our community by helping Community Warehouse. Don’t live in the PDX area? Visit the ACP Resources page or Contact me with your location and I’ll find an organization that can use your stuff. As always, thanks for making it a brighter world!