Homeless-staffed landscaping firm profits 1st year FWD

Tom Boland (wgcp@earthlink.net)
Sun, 8 Nov 1998 18:21:36 -0400


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http://www.starnews.com/news/citystate/98/nov/1108AP_homel.html
FWD  Indianapolis Star


HOMELESS STAFFED FIRM RAKES IN PROFITS FIRST YEAR

The Associated Press


     SOUTH BEND, Ind. (Nov. 8, 1998) -- A landscaping service staffed by
homeless people has earned a tidy profit in its first year by helping the
homeless become self-sufficient.

     So far this year, CFH Landscaping has netted $10,000 from $200,000 in
total revenue for landscaping work for big-name clients such as the
University of Notre Dame, Memorial Hospital and the city of South Bend.

     The Center for the Homeless, which owns the business, intends to plow
the earnings back into its"continuum for care" program, a six-phase process
aimed at leading the homeless to self-reliance and homeownership.

     "I see this as a chance to give the center some independence," said
Vicki Macknick, one of about 30 current and former residents of the
homeless shelter who have worked for the landscaping firm.

     Learning on the job

     Macknick, who lived in the shelter for a year until May, had worked as
a cook before but wanted to learn something different. She and fellow
worker Demetrius Kinsey learned about perennial and annual plants and about
safety when using power tools.

     Kelly McCoy, a recovering alcoholic, worked so hard and so well that
he'll become one of the crew leaders next year.

     "I can be a little bullheaded sometimes," he said of his approach in
dealing with his co-workers.

     CFH Executive Director Lou Nanni said CFH's goal is to double its
business next year. The center had been looking to start a business in
recent years, but it wasn't until the center's staff heard about a
landscaping program in Chicago that used homeless workers that CFH
officials knew they'd found their angle.

     Especially impressive was that ServiceMaster's Chicago program went
from grossing $300,000 in 1993 to $3.5 million this year.

     Getting into business

     CFH ended up forming a partnership with ServiceMaster, which is based
on Christian principles. The center invested in two trucks, a flatbed
trailer, mowers, leaf blowers and other equipment.

     Though the center's business manager, Shannon Cullinan, thought the
business would merely break even this year, word spread quickly about the
homeless laborers' excellent work.

     Memorial Hospital's president and chief executive officer, Phil
Newbold, says the
     hospital grounds "have not looked better."

     Notre Dame later hired the crew to lay sod for its new golf course, a
contract that helped CFH to bring in a profit this year. The center's work
will wrap up next week, but winter opportunities have already knocked: The
entrepreneurs have contracts to clear snow.

END FORWARD
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http://www.starnews.com/news/citystate/98/nov/1108AP_homel.html

FWD  Indianapolis Star



<paraindent><param>right,left</param>HOMELESS STAFFED FIRM RAKES IN
PROFITS FIRST YEAR


The Associated Press 

</paraindent>


     SOUTH BEND, Ind. (Nov. 8, 1998) -- A landscaping service staffed
by homeless people has earned a tidy profit in its first year by
helping the homeless become self-sufficient. 


     So far this year, CFH Landscaping has netted $10,000 from $200,000
in total revenue for landscaping work for big-name clients such as the
University of Notre Dame, Memorial Hospital and the city of South Bend.



     The Center for the Homeless, which owns the business, intends to
plow the earnings back into its"continuum for care" program, a
six-phase process aimed at leading the homeless to self-reliance and
homeownership. 


     "I see this as a chance to give the center some independence,"
said Vicki Macknick, one of about 30 current and former residents of
the homeless shelter who have worked for the landscaping firm. 


     Learning on the job 


     Macknick, who lived in the shelter for a year until May, had
worked as a cook before but wanted to learn something different. She
and fellow worker Demetrius Kinsey learned about perennial and annual
plants and about safety when using power tools. 


     Kelly McCoy, a recovering alcoholic, worked so hard and so well
that he'll become one of the crew leaders next year. 


     "I can be a little bullheaded sometimes," he said of his approach
in dealing with his co-workers. 


     CFH Executive Director Lou Nanni said CFH's goal is to double its
business next year. The center had been looking to start a business in
recent years, but it wasn't until the center's staff heard about a
landscaping program in Chicago that used homeless workers that CFH
officials knew they'd found their angle. 


     Especially impressive was that ServiceMaster's Chicago program
went from grossing $300,000 in 1993 to $3.5 million this year. 


     Getting into business 


     CFH ended up forming a partnership with ServiceMaster, which is
based on Christian principles. The center invested in two trucks, a
flatbed trailer, mowers, leaf blowers and other equipment. 


     Though the center's business manager, Shannon Cullinan, thought
the business would merely break even this year, word spread quickly
about the homeless laborers' excellent work. 


     Memorial Hospital's president and chief executive officer, Phil
Newbold, says the

     hospital grounds "have not looked better." 


     Notre Dame later hired the crew to lay sod for its new golf
course, a contract that helped CFH to bring in a profit this year. The
center's work will wrap up next week, but winter opportunities have
already knocked: The entrepreneurs have contracts to clear snow.


END FORWARD 

HOMELESS PEOPLE'S NETWORK  <<http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/>  Home Page

ARCHIVES  <<http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/archives.html>  read posts to HPN

TO JOIN  <<http://aspin.asu.edu/hpn/join.html> or email Tom <<wgcp@earthlink.net>

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