D.c. Gigs: Helping Those On The Fringe In A Wealthy Suburb (Transcript) | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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D.C. Gigs: Helping Those On The Fringe In A Wealthy Suburb

MS. REBECCA SHEIR

00:00:03
We'll stay in Northern Virginia for the time being and head Southeast to Falls Church. Last year Falls Church topped Forbes Magazine's list of the richest counties in the U.S. But despite a median income of more than $113,000 per year. There's still those here who are struggling to get by. In this month's edition of D.C. Gigs, Marc Adams talks with Lance Flowers who lends a big helping hand to the city's homeless residents.

MR. LANCE FLOWERS

00:00:30
My name's Lance Flowers. I work for New Hope Housing. I'm a program coordinator for the Falls Church Homeless Shelter. How you doing, Tim.

TIM

00:00:41
All right.

FLOWERS

00:00:42
It's really a satisfaction because I believe every person, every individual need the basic needs. And I feel that my position, I giving them basic needs. And the basic needs is something that consists of shelter, food and water. And what we do here is provide that. How was the meal tonight fellas?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE 1

00:01:03
Delicious.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE 2

00:01:03
Awesome.

FLOWERS

00:01:04
It was awesome? Good, good. Even though Fairfax and Falls Church is one of the wealthiest cities, the support from the city and from the community are very, very high. The Falls Church Homeless Shelter gets so many donations, basically 75 percent of the running of the shelter comes from private organizations around Falls Church area. So even though it's one of the richest cities, I think, people that are less fortunate around here receive a lot more services then the average person in D.C. Good morning, John.

JOHN

00:01:42
How you doing bud?

FLOWERS

00:01:43
How you doing?

JOHN

00:01:44
All right.

FLOWERS

00:01:44
Once you come in to the shelter, you have a bed to sleep on, you also have access to a TV...

FLOWERS

00:01:55
...you have access to our computers. How's the job search coming along then?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE 3

00:02:00
It's -- the internet's pretty good.

FLOWERS

00:02:03
Good, good. Okay, let me know if you need help with anything.

3

00:02:06
Okay.

FLOWERS

00:02:07
One of the volunteers come in and she's our volunteer coordinator and she loves to play board games. So we all got together and we decided to play Monopoly. And we just had a ball. I think what it did was take the residents mind off the situation they was in. It took my mind off the daily operations of the -- not totally but just for that time, you know. And we just have fun. I mean, we was just -- I lost but I didn't get Boardwalk or Park Place but that was one of the memorable moments. They fried eggs so today's late night.

FLOWERS

00:02:43
What keeps me going in this field is knowing that I am making a difference in somebody's life. Knowing that somebody is not out there without shelter, without food, without water. That's what drives me to not turn a blind eye to that. If I can't find employment or housing or the goals they set. At least I can supply them basic needs in this time where it's very cold outside.

SHEIR

00:03:14
That was Lance Flowers talking with producer Marc Adams. And if you have a distinctively D.C. Gig you think we should highlight, let us know. Send an email to metro@wamu.org or visit us on Facebook. Just head to Facebook.com/metroconnection.org.
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