Mystic Area Shelter director honored by coalition that helps homeless

Mystic - Lisa Tepper Bates, the executive director of Mystic Area Shelter & Hospitality Inc., has received the "Be Change" Award from the Connecticut Coalition To End Homelessness. She received the award at the CCEH annual meeting last Thursday in Meriden.

CCEH said Bates was honored for MASH's outstanding work in organizing and implementing the state's first coordinated intake system for homeless families.

Before the Unified Intake System was implemented, a family in need of shelter would have to call individual homeless shelters looking for assistance. Now families in New London County can call 2-1-1 to set up a meeting with a coordinator who is familiar with openings at each of four family shelters in the region - MASH, The Covenant Shelter of New London, Thames Valley Council for Community Action and the Women's Center of Southeastern Connecticut.

The program is funded by a grant from the Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut.

Carol Walter, CCEH's executive director, said the new system "aims to more efficiently serve families in urgent need of shelter, while making better use of the very limited resources of family shelters."

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