Tag Archives: grace marketplace

GRACE Marketplace

by Jon DeCarmine, Director of Operations at GRACE Marketplace

We see homelessness and poverty so much, so often, that it’s easy to be a little bit calloused and jaded about it all. It’s so prevalent that it can start to seem, somehow, normal. We’ve grown accustomed to seeing people sleep on park benches—the woman pushing a shopping cart filled with everything she owns, the guy outside the gas station looking for change. We’re used to looking the other way. We’ve mastered the art of avoiding eye contact—because we have to, because the problem will never go away.

The problem seems so big and insurmountable that it’s hard to imagine that we could ever do anything big enough to really make a difference.

I’ve worked with homeless folks in Gainesville for 19 years, and I still struggle with feeling overwhelmed and jaded most days. Mostly, I feel like a cross between Sisyphus and some sort of cut-rate undertaker, moving one person into housing just in time to watch another roll back down the hill to take their place.

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Home Van Pet Care: Project News from Grace Marketplace

by Elizabeth Howard, Project Coordinator

Grace Marketplace, our new homeless shelter, is now home to 11 dogs and three cats. We go there once a week and distribute pet food for these dogs and cats.

We are finding a lot of old friends at Grace, people who relocated from Tent City with their pets, but there are a lot of people who don’t know us or our Project, so it is a time of building trust and creating processes to distribute pet food and learn else is needed for the pets.

With only a few inside beds available inside the fenced facility, virtually everyone is a camper outside Grace. Pets are not allowed inside the fence at all and campers share their tents and campsites with their pets.

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