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Homeless for the Holidays

The path up and out of homelessness is composed of many steps—programs, services, and housing opportunities—each of which meets individuals and families at different levels of need. In addition to improving the efficiency of networked basic-shelter services, as profiled in the “Gimme Shelter” article (Feature, Nov. 13), we must have a robust continuum of safe, stable, affordable housing in mainstream settings and high-quality services in the community. These programs can be both prevention and cure for homelessness, supporting people as they move forward in recovery to achieve greater levels of stability and independence.

Main Street Housing, Inc. (mainstreethousing.org) is an award-winning nonprofit organization that develops quality, affordable, independent rental housing for individuals and families with psychiatric disabilities in communities across Maryland. Our unique model is grounded in the principles of empowerment, consumer choice, and supportive accountability.

We recently expanded our efforts into Baltimore City with the generous support of the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, and we are tremendously excited to offer supportive housing to up to a dozen individuals through this initiative. Providing an affordable, permanent home in the community for individuals and families coming out of homelessness allows more shelter beds to be available for those in greatest need.

Ken Wireman

Executive Director, Main Street Housing, Inc.

Baltimore

Clever Corn

I suppose racism and resentment led the Puritans to substitute Old World grains for the Native American staple, since during and after King Philip’s War, when England’s King Philip came pretty close to driving New England’s Puritans into the sea, the red folk, low-tech as they were, were so adept at war as to generate lots of fear right up to and during the War of 1812. The dour, ascetic Puritans may have done that because corn is tastier than rye or wheat.

The hedonistic Cavaliers didn’t do that, so south of the Mason-Dixon line people have cuisine, while Wasp Northerners have only food. H.L. Mencken grew healthy, wise, and large on cheap seafood and lots of “corncakes.”

Cornbread lovers have likely noticed that most of it is too sweet and threatens instant diabetes. Pupusas (“Dónde Están Mis Pupusas?,” Eats & Drinks, Nov. 13) are now available in Baltimore and, I’d like to point out to folks watching their blood sugar, aren’t sugar-laden at all. Pupusas, at a supermarket or tienda near you, i [sic] bueno!

Thomas Fox

Baltimore

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