Ventura County Sheriff – Incident Press Release
On December 27, 2019, Project H.O.P.E. successfully reunited a homeless male with his family in Oregon.
On December 12, 2019, the Camarillo Police Department was made aware of a homeless encampment at the intersection of Upland Road and Flynn Road. This encampment was hidden in an area managed by the Calleguas Water District north of the Upland Road bridge. The encampment was occupied by one male, who had become homeless due to several negative life events.
Deputy Chris Dyer, who oversees the Camarillo Police Department’s Project H.O.P.E., made contact with the subject and began efforts to connect him to services locally, as well as reunite him with his family out of state. Project H.O.P.E. was able to find the man’s family and make contact with them in Oregon. Through a number of phone calls with the man’s family, Deputy Dyer learned more about this subject and the path which had led him to becoming homeless. Though his family did want him home in Oregon, a plan of action needed to be established to ensure he received the assistance that he needed to improve his position in life. This plan of action included mediation between family members, finding employment, finding housing, a plan to seek mental health assistance once he returned to Oregon, and travel expenses. Overall, it took about three weeks to accomplish the goals in this action plan.
On December 27, 2019, Deputy Dyer accompanied the homeless man to the Burbank Airport where he boarded a flight destined for Reedsport, Oregon. The man’s family sent photographs of him enjoying a late Christmas celebration with his elderly grandfather, sister, and parents. The road to recovery for the man will continue with the help of his family and services in Oregon. He recently wrote a letter to Deputy Dyer thanking him for his “genuine and professional service.” In addition, the man’s parents each wrote a small note on the letter. The father wrote in part, “Chris, thank you for giving us a second chance with our son.” The mother wrote, “(Chris) You are an answer to my prayers; God bless you greatly!”
Project H.O.P.E. stands for Helping Our Community Progress Efficiently. Project H.O.P.E. operates under the direction of the Camarillo Special Enforcement Detail. The main goal of Project H.O.P.E. is to help members of our community who are homeless or close to becoming homeless get help through a variety of stakeholders in the community. Project H.O.P.E. teams up with non-profit groups, faith based organizations, and services offered through the County of Ventura to assist this vulnerable population. The process for connecting homeless individuals to services is very labor-intensive and takes dedication, cooperation and persistence. The City of Camarillo, Camarillo Police Department, Ventura County Sheriff’s Office and various community organizations are committed to providing help to those who are less fortunate and find themselves in need of assistance.
If you, or anyone you may know, is close too, or currently homeless, please call Project H.O.P.E. at (805) 383-4803. A list of services available is also available at https://211ventura.org or by calling 211. 211 provides information on housing, food, transportation, health care, substance abuse, senior assistance, legal assistance, and much more.