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New anti-panhandling program provides a better way to offer change

Posted May 16, 2018

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Folks in Fort Worth have big hearts, and whenever someone asks for a helping hand, we’re likely to give it to them. But when it comes to panhandling on city streets, handing over spare change is a bad idea.

Panhandling violates a Fort Worth city ordinance, encourages a transient way of life and negatively affects public safety and quality of life. In 2017, Fort Worth Police issued 691 citations for soliciting contributions in the street, 210 citations for aggressive panhandling in a prohibited area and 47 citations for soliciting donations.

A coalition of community partners — representing government, the business community and social service agencies — has a new solution. While many panhandling programs go after the panhandlers, this new program is about educating the people who give money. This will allow them to donate to a fund that will help those in need.

Residents who are willing to help can text FWCHANGE to 41444 and their donations will benefit the Tarrant County Homeless Coalition. The donated funds will help provide housing-related services such as application fees and security deposits; bus tickets; motel vouchers for families; and mattresses.

Community partners will work with businesses and organizations to help educate residents and visitors about the program. The city is asking residents and organizations to help spread the word about the new program. Information is free to download on the city’s website.

A community conference on homelessness is planned for 9 a.m.-noon June 30 at University Christian Church, 2720 S. University Drive. Workshops will cover effective giving, how to get involved and housing opportunities. The goal is to educate the public and to redirect charitable efforts to be more effective.

Register for the conference.

To learn more, contact Tara Perez at 817-392-2235.

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Task Force on Race and Culture: 5 p.m. July 16, 2018; Oak Hall, Deborah Beggs Moncrief Garden Center, 3220 Botanic Garden Boulevard.
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Great Southwest Parkway Street Improvements Project Meeting: 6 p.m. July 16, 2018; TTI, Inc., 2441 Northeast Parkway.

Canceled Audit Committee: 1 p.m. July 17, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.

Canceled Infrastructure & Transportation Committee: 2 p.m. July 17, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.

Canceled City Council Work Session: 3 p.m. July 17, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.

Spa Treatment at Chisholm Trail: 6 p.m. July 17, 2018; Chisholm Trail Community Center, 4932 McPherson Blvd.

Canceled City Council Meeting: 7 p.m. July 17, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Chambers, 200 Texas Street.

Building a Successful Sales Program for Today: 8:30 a.m. July 18, 2018; James E. Guinn Entrepreneurial Campus, 1150 S Freeway.
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Fort Worth Public Improvement District #1 Advisory Board Meeting: 9 a.m. July 18, 2018; Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. Offices, 777 Taylor Street, Suite 100.
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Commercial Board of Adjustment Work Session: 9 a.m. July 18, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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Commercial Board of Adjustment Public Hearing: 10 a.m. July 18, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Chambers, 200 Texas Street.
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Residential Board of Adjustment Work Session: 12:30 p.m. July 18, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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Residential Board of Adjustment Public Hearing: 1:30 p.m. July 18, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Chambers, 200 Texas Street.
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Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone Number Four (Southside TIF): 2 p.m. July 18, 2018; City Hall, 3rd floor, Conference Room 380, 200 Texas Street.
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Chisholm V Corporation: 5 a.m. July 19, 2018; Fort Worth Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Urban Design Commission Work Session: 9:30 a.m. July 19, 2018; City Hall, 2nd floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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Fort Worth Public Improvement District #14 Advisory Board Meeting: 10 a.m. July 19, 2018; Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. Offices, 777 Taylor Street.
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Urban Design Commission Public Hearing: 10 a.m. July 19, 2018; City Hall, 2nd floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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City of Fort Worth “Monthly Informational Forum for M/WBEs”: 11:30 a.m. July 19, 2018; James E. Guinn Entrepreneurial Campus - Fort Worth Business Assistance Center, 1150 South Freeway.

Starting a Business at Hillside: 5 p.m. July 19, 2018; Hillside Community Center, 1201 E. Maddox Ave.

Fort Worth Housing Solutions Board of Commissioners: 5 p.m. July 19, 2018; Fort Worth Housing Solutions Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Fort Worth Affordability, Inc.: 5 p.m. July 19, 2018; Fort Worth Housing Solutions Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Gateway Public Facility Corporation: 5 p.m. July 19, 2018; Fort Worth Housing Solutions Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Sycamore Housing, Inc.: 5 p.m. July 19, 2018; Fort Worth Housing Solutions Administrative Board Room, 1201 East 12th Street.
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Stallion Pointe Public Facility Corporation: 5 p.m. July 19, 2018; Fort Worth Housing Solutions Administrative Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Fair Park Public Facility Corporation: 5 p.m. July 19, 2018; Fort Worth Housing Solutions Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Fair Oaks Public Facility Corporation: 5 p.m. July 19, 2018; Fort Worth Housing Solutions Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Walsh Ranch Sewer Main Extension Project Meeting: 6:30 p.m. July 19, 2018; Fort Worth Westside Water Treatment Plant, 12200 Old Weatherford Road.

Community Food Share Day at Como: 9 a.m. July 20, 2018; Como Community Center, 4900 Horne St.

Parents' Night Out at Chisholm Trail: 6 p.m. July 20, 2018; Chisholm Trail Community Center, 4936 McPherson Blvd.

Parents' Night Out at R.D. Evans: 6 p.m. July 20, 2018; R.D. Evans Community Center, 3242 Lackland Rd..

Slumber Party at Andrew Doc Session: 6 p.m. July 20, 2018; Andrew Doc Session Community Center, 201 S. Sylvania Ave.

Movie in the Park at MLK: 8 p.m. July 20, 2018; MLK Jr. Community Center, 5565 Truman Drive.

Code Rangers: 9 a.m. July 21, 2018; Hazel Harvey Peace Center for Neighborhoods, 818 Missouri Ave, Fort Worth, TX 76104.

View the full city calendar.