For the first time, the City of Oxnard hosted a Homeless Resource Fair. The city says it is a step in the right direction to help address the homeless crisis.
People living on the streets in Oxnard showed up to the Homeless Resource Fair Wednesday morning. It’s the first time the city has hosted an event like this.
Mark Alvarado is Oxnard’s homeless assistance coordinator.
“The purpose of the fair is to bring resources and services to the homeless, specifically in the city of Oxnard,” said Alvarado.
He says more than 35 organizations were at the fair held at Plaza Park, including medical and dental services, behavioral health, and the Housing Authority.
“Unemployment is here and we also have attorneys here to help expunge records for people that might have records that might prevent them from getting a job,” said Alvarado.
41-year-old Taron Waters was one of the many people looking to use those resources.
“I just needed to get help,” said Waters. “I needed to get my life back on track. I kind of fell off and got caught up with addiction, and other things. I am still struggling a bit, but I am getting it together.”
Waters says he became homeless back in 2017 after his mother passed away.
“I am here to get the services that they are offering, and you know, I need the help,” said Waters.
City officials say the event will allow them to track homeless people in a database, so they can help them get back on their feet. The city hopes to hold these resource fairs twice a year.
“This is the first time we have ever done anything like this,” said Alvarado. “We are really excited. We have great participation, and we expect over 150 people here. It is just really what needs to be done in a comprehensive holistic way to serve the homeless.”
“I am happy,” said Waters. “I am happy that we finally have something like this and brought everyone together.”