Joelle Chinnock started her new job as the Ending Homelessness Initiative Coordinator in
August. Before this, she served as the Director of Disaster Recovery and Development for the Paradise church after the Camp Fire of 2018. In this position, she led multiple support initiatives, wrote grants, and co-founded the Camp Shed Project.
Applying her professional and personal experience to the Ending Homelessness Initiative, Chinnock stated, “During the Camp Fire incident, I was not equipped nor trained. However, I felt the urge to assist my fellow survivors. This desire was driven by my own personal journey to overcome the trauma of being displaced and losing my home. I know many unhoused individuals experience similar feelings of hopelessness and despair. I am thrilled to be part of the solution and restore hope in these people’s lives.”
At the 2022 Constituency Session, NCC President Marc Woodson presented this new initiative, “Our goal is to reduce homelessness measurably and significantly in every county where we operate by 2032. This means achieving and maintaining ‘functional zero’ for specific populations within each county, such as chronically homeless or veterans. Although the Northern California Conference comprises 31 counties in California, we do not have a presence in all of them. Therefore, our focus is to reduce homelessness where we have churches and schools in the next ten years.”
Chinnock will serve as the primary contact for the initiative. As coordinator, she will shape the Built for Zero model strategy and liaise between NCC entities, regional organizations, and community groups. She will manage day-to-day operations, including volunteer development and training.
Chinnock continued, “I understand that each county where our schools and churches are present faces different issues, but the aim is to ensure that every entity is equipped with the necessary resources and information to address homelessness based on the Built for Zero model.”
Woodson concluded, “I am very excited to add Joelle to our team. She is going to be working on a very important initiative that will help our churches and schools become more community-relevant as they work with top leaders and non-profit organizations, addressing homelessness.”
Featured in Northern Lights, September 21, 2023