Hometown Hero: Polly Ruddick

Story by Rocko Jerome | Photo submitted


Polly Ruddick
Office of Homelessness Prevention

Polly Ruddick works in the Office of Homelessness Prevention, and while tremendously dedicated to those she serves 365 days a year, she has stepped up even more during this time of great need. “Right now, I really don’t have anything resembling a ‘normal day,’” she says. “Each day brings new challenges. For one example, where we used to be able to feed our clients in dining rooms, we now need to get boxed meals to them, so that we can continue to help while also practicing safe social distancing. That means we need boxes, utensils, bottled water, everything necessary to make this a reality. This amazing team that I’m a part of is dedicated to making situations better for our clients. We still must provide every service.”

Polly is a mighty advocate for the homeless and those at risk, and she asks you to hesitate before you judge the less fortunate.”I believe that housing is a fundamental right,” she says. “We meet people where they are and strive to educate the public. I always ask you to consider your own “but fors.” By that, I mean the times where, for instance, but for $300 from your family when you needed it, you might not have been able to pay your rent, or if not but for someone lending you their car, you would’ve missed work and lost your job. It’s real people who get into these situations, and if it never happened to you, you’re very fortunate.”