Dear Editor:

In July 2016, the Ames Tribune printed an article announcing the retirement of Emergency Residence Project (ERP)’s longtime director, Vic Moss, and a second, announcing our new director, Carrie Dunnwald. The board of ERP, which provides emergency shelter, transitional housing and homelessness prevention, is grateful for the attention drawn to ERP as a result of these articles.

We very much appreciate our volunteers and our contributors, including all those who donate to United Way of Story County. Currently, United Way, through the ASSET process, funds more than a quarter of our emergency shelter as well as part of our transitional housing program. Without United Way funding, fewer families would be able to transition back into stable housing, and fewer men and families would find emergency shelter in Ames. This is all the more important since other shelters in counties bordering Story County have closed in the last year. Funding covers a wide array of needs for our shelter, ranging from utilities to staff time. Because of your support, we are reconfiguring our staff to allow for additional case management to be available to both our shelter guests and our transitional housing residents. We hope this change will provide better outcomes for our residents, which can only be good for Story County!

This year, in addition to the regular ASSET funding, we received a United Way Community Impact Grant that helped to provide footlockers and other furniture for our shelter rooms. In the coming year, a new grant will help us make our transitional housing yard a safer and less water-logged place for children to play as we work to improve drainage throughout the property. We thank United Way of Story County and all Story County residents for your gracious support through our recent transition and as we look to the future.


Shari Reilly

Board President of Emergency Residence Project