Video by Joshua Trujillo and David Llama / Starbucks Newsroom
When King County families find themselves in a housing crisis and call for help, Sherry Tillman answers.
Tillman, an emergency family shelter intake operator for Mary’s Place and King County, is often the first point of contact for families in need of housing. At 9 a.m. each day, she settles into her office – a small teller booth in a former bank building in north Seattle – to start answering calls. Some families she speaks to are about to lose their housing; others are already sleeping in cars or tents.
A mother of five, Tillman deeply understands the plight of the people on the other end of the line; she, too, once experienced homelessness. Her firsthand experience gives her an abiding compassion for families in crisis, one that fuels her each day as she works tirelessly to connect them with shelter and housing.
In Seattle, hometown of Starbucks, government officials declared a state of emergency in 2015 as the homelessness crisis grew. The region's homeless population is now the third largest in the country, with more than 12,000 people living without shelter on any given night.
Starbucks has teamed up with iconic rock band Pearl Jam as well as other local businesses, individuals, government agencies, and foundations to help tackle this public health crisis.
On August 8 and August 10, Pearl Jam will play HomeShows concerts at Safeco Field. The shows will be the band’s first performances in their hometown in five years. The shows and surrounding events aim to mobilize Seattle and its citizens to step up and help address the homelessness crisis.
Band together with us by donating, volunteering and learning more about this crisis: https://pearljam.com/fighthomelessness.
For more information on this story, contact Joshua Trujillo