Despite the ‘renaissance’ in Cleveland, people still struggle to live a dignified life. 46% of the people in Cleveland live in poverty and 23,000 people experience homelessness. Join us to learn more! This panel discussion that will center the perspectives of people with lived experience of homelessness and community leaders advocating for change.
Joyce Robinson has worked at the at the Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless (NEOCH) for more than three years. She is a U.S. Army veteran who experienced homelessness for 14 months, Joyce earned a Master’s Degree from Cleveland State University in Adult Learning and Development. In addition to having a strong interest in social justice, she has a history of fighting for equality and justice for women and homeless individuals.
Maria Smith is a supervising attorney for the Housing Practice Group of the Legal Aid Society of Cleveland. She serves as co-chair of the Housing Committee for the Greater Cleveland Reentry Strategy Coalition. Maria participates in the Citizens Advisory Council of Lutheran Hospital, and in 2015 received the Community Service Award from Cleveland Clinic - Lutheran Hospital. Maria has served on the Board of The Metanoia Project, which serves people who are disinclined to use the emergency shelter network in Cuyahoga County. She graduated from the University of Virginia Law School.
Toni Johnson is the Women’s Homeless Outreach Coordinator at the Louis Stokes Department of Veteran Affairs. She has worked tirelessly for the past seventeen years focusing on female veterans and families. She began her homeless work in the late 1980’s in outreach at Healthcare for the Homeless now Care Alliance. She managed the First Permanent Supportive Housing Program for Women “The Upstairs”.
Loh is the Lead Advocate, NEOCH Homeless Congress. A member of the Advisory Board Member, Cuyahoga County [Office of] Homeless Services. Works as the Secretary, Coordinating Committee, Clevelanders for Public Transit and well know as a Activist & Advocate in Fighting Social INjustice
Moderated by :
Christopher Knestrick is the Executive Director of Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless. He has over 10 years of experience working with the homelessness in Cleveland and directing advocacy efforts in the international and local community. Chris has been committed to organizing work, undoing oppressions, and nonviolent resistance that centers the voices most impacted by public policy and state violence. His work has taken him from the streets of Cleveland to the mountains of Colombia, South America. He is a graduate of McCormick Theological Seminary. He spends his day thinking about how to get the community to love so fiercely that homelessness is unimaginable.