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Who We Are

Our Mission

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Homeward serves as Polk County’s homelessness planning organization, forging strategic partnerships between homelessness organizations, community partners, government officials, and people experiencing homelessness. Through these partnerships, we’re creating an efficient, effective homeless response system that meets all residents’ strengths and needs. Our work is to ensure that Polk County residents rarely experience homelessness at all and that their stay in homelessness is a brief, one-time experience when it does occur

Homeward is driven by the following principles:

Board Members

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Homeward's Board of Directors is a diverse, passionate group of individuals united in the work to ensure that one day, everyone in Polk County will have a safe place to call home. Their leadership guides Homeward in creating a coordinated approach to ending homelessness by distributing funding, best practices, data, and training. 

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Staff

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Homeward's small, but mighty staff takes a system-wide approach to homelessness by looking at all pieces of the puzzle, identifying community gaps, and leading innovative solutions. We operate as a hub of strategic planning, expertise, and partnership on homelessness in Polk County.

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Angie Arthur | Executive Director

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Abbey Barrow | YHDP Coordinator

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Jim Cain | Contract Employee

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515.282.3233 | Info@homewardiowa.org

505 5th Avenue, Suite 1000 Des Moines, IA 50309

Our Mission
Board Members
Staff
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FOUNDATIONAL BELIEF 01

Housing First

Research tells us that the most effective way to end homelessness is to quickly house people with no preconditions, requirements, or barriers. Once people are safely housed, they can then begin to pursue their goals and engage with services or treatment.

FOUNDATIONAL BELIEF 02

Racial Equity

Data shows us that people of color, and Black individuals in particular, are heavily over-represented in Polk County’s homeless response system. Homeward examines racial disparity in programs to build equitable services and dismantle systemic racism. 

FOUNDATIONAL BELIEF 03

Community Collaboration

Homeward acts in close partnership with the Polk County community to ensure a coordinated approach to preventing and ending homelessness. We collaborate across sectors to engage in innovative partnerships that elevate community voices. 

Board Members

Icon_Small.png

Homeward's Board of Directors is a diverse, passionate group of individuals united in the work to ensure that one day, everyone in Polk County will have a safe place to call home. Their leadership guides Homeward in creating a coordinated approach to ending homelessness by distributing funding, best practices, data, and training. 

Katie Albrecht-Snell- Nationwide

Brett Burk- RIVA

Lisa Crabbs- City of Des Moines

Angela Dethlefs-Trettin, Secretary- Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines

Rebecca Foster- Des Moines Municipal Housing Agency

Reverend Frederick Gaddy- St. Paul AME Church

Lorna Garcia- Des Moines Police Department

Dennis Henderson- Broadlawns Medical Center

Charles Hill- Iowa Civil Rights Commission 

Lori Jensen- Children and Families of Iowa

Amber Lewis- City of Des Moines

Jennifer Miner- VA Central Iowa

Tony MontgomeryTreasurer- Federal Loan Home Bank of Des Moines

Tami Nielsen- Food Bank of Iowa

Jill Padgett- Iowa Department of Human Rights

Manisha Paudel- City of Des Moines  

Alyson SimmonsCentral Iowa Trauma Recovery Center

Nathan Simpson, Vice Chair- Primary Health Care

Ehren Stover Wright- Institute for Community Alliances 

Annie Uetz, Chair- Polk County Behavioral Health and Disability Services

Amanda Wanke- DART

Whitni Warnke- UnityPoint Health

David Weidt- Polk County Conservation

Lyn Wilson- Des Moines Public Schools

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Staff

Icon_Small.png

Homeward's small, but mighty staff takes a system-wide approach to homelessness by looking at all pieces of the puzzle, identifying community gaps, and leading innovative solutions. We operate as a hub of strategic planning, expertise, and partnership on homelessness in Polk County.

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Angie Arthur | Executive Director

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Amy Croll | Community Engagement Coordinator

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Jim Cain | Grants & Program Coordinator 

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515.302.6017 | info@homewardiowa.org

505 5th Avenue, Suite 1010 Des Moines, IA 50309

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