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June, July and August 2016 News Reports

Resource Directory deadlines are in June

During June and July, The Fig Tree staff and volunteers will be finalizing the 2016-2017 Resource Directory: Guide to Congregations and Community Agencies.

Final corrections and updates, as well as ad copy are die by June 15, so the camera ready copy can go to the printer in early July.

Businesses, congregations, ministries, agencies and organizations wishing to assure they have enough copies for use during the coming year need to have their bulk order requests in by June 30, to assure that enough copies are printed.

The 11,500 copies printed for the 2015-16 edition are nearly all distributed.

“There has been great demand for the printed copies to share with those who need access to resources to find housing, education and jobs, particularly people emerging from poverty,” said Malcolm Haworth, editor of the directory, which is published in partnership with Community Colleges of Spokane Headstart/ECEAP.

The Fig Tree Board’s Annual Meeting is at noon on Thursday, June 2.  The board reviews the year, and elects new board members and officers.

For information, call 535-4112 or 535-1813, or email

Cindy Algeo retires from housing agency

Cindy Algeo, executive director of the Spokane Low Income Housing Consortium for 20 years, is retiring and Kay Murano is the consortium’s incoming executive director.

Kay has been development director at Volunteers of America since 2012.  Before that she was a grant writer and administrative assistant at Catholic Charities.

The two will be honored at an open house from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., Thursday, July 14, at the SNAP Administration Office, 3102 W. Fort Wright Dr.

The Spokane Low Income Housing Consortium fosters collaboration among nonprofits and housing developers to increase the number of affordable homes for renters and homeowners.

For information, call 325-3235 or visit

Family caregivers gain tips at conference

Frontier Behavioral Health’s Family Caregiver Support Program presents the 2016 Family Caregiver Conference Wednesday, June 22, at the Lincoln Center, 1316 N. Lincoln St.

The theme, “You Put the Care in Giving!” celebrates efforts of unpaid caregivers of disabled adults in the community by providing speakers, breakout sessions, a community resource fair, games and door prizes. 

Brenda Avadian, author and founder of, is the featured speaker. Another presenter is registered nurse Mary Ann Wilson of the nationally recognized Sit and Be Fit television exercise program.

Educational sessions will address caregivers’ legal options and emotional wellness, and offer a caregiver support group experience.

In addition, a panel will answer questions on geriatric psychiatry, Alzheimer’s and related dementias, pharmacology and medical equipment. 

More than 30 businesses and nonprofits will provide information about community resources and support for family caregivers and their loved ones.

Five CEU credit hours are available to paid caregivers who pre-register to attend. 

For information, call 458-7450.

Unity in the Community will be Aug. 20

Unity in the Community will be held from 10 to 4 on Saturday, Aug. 20, at Riverfront Park with the theme, “Embracing Culture and Diversity.” 

“For 21 years, Unity in the Community has been successful and garnered the support of vital sectors of the Spokane community,” said April Anderson, co-chair with Mareesa Henderson.  “Last year, it drew more than 25 sponsors, 150 vendors, hundreds of volunteers and 10,000 attendees from the area’s diverse population.  We gave out 2,000 bags of school supplies.”

Both believe the community needs to respond to diversity with more than just tolerance.

“We need to embrace our different cultures,” said April.  “We need to come together to understand each other. 

Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church organized the first Unity in the Community in 1994 at Liberty Park.  By 2007, it outgrew that park and moved to Riverfront.  It was under AHANA (African American, Hispanic, Asian and Native American) and then Community-Minded Enterprises, before becoming an independent nonprofit in 2014.

The festival features diverse entertainment, a cultural village, displays, games, arts, food, and activities for adults, including a job fair and health screening.

At 5:30 p.m., Friday, June 3, is a Rooftop Extravaganza benefit at Umpqua Bank, 111 N. Wall.

For information, call 599-6669, email or visit

Sponsors and booth vendors can reserve space at

Habitat store reopens, Blitz Build underway

Habitat for Humanity-Spokane’s Store opened Wednesday, June 1 at the new location, 1805 E. Trent. Store hours will be 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesdays through Saturdays. The store relocated to the former Pacific Wholesale Florist Building.

“This central location will provide new opportunities for the store and the affiliate, increase awareness and partnerships, and allow the organization to serve more families in need,” said Michelle Girardot, CEO of Habitat for Humanity-Spokane.

It has good access to I-90, and is near downtown Spokane and the University District. There is more parking space and easier access for donating and picking up large purchases, she said.

In its 16th year, the retail outlet for new and used building supplies, has raised more than $2.5 million for Habitat home building in Spokane County.

Habitat-Spokane provides permanent housing solutions for families living within 25 to 60 percent of the area median income.

The annual Blitz Build kicks off at 8:30 a.m., Monday, June 6, at the Blitz Build site, 400 E. I St. in Deer Park.  It concludes on June 17.  Habitat has been “Blitz Building” for 14 years.

Volunteers will frame four homes from the foundation up in partnership with candidate families. It will finish and dedicate four other homes.

For information, call 534-2552 or email

FOR meets at Seabeck

“Persevering FOR Peace” is the theme for the Annual Northwest Regional Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR) Conference and the FOR USA Centennial Celebration from Friday to Monday, July 1 to 4 at the Seabeck (Wash.) Conference Center.

Keynote speakers are Jamila Raqib who works on strategic nonviolent action and Erica Chenoweth, an authority on political violence and alternatives who co-authored Why Civil Resistance Works.  There are scholarships for youth and young adults.

For information, call 206-789-5565 or visit