Eden Village of Kansas City is currently working to revive purchased land, to build a master planned gated community and supportive atmosphere for the chronically homeless. Our future residents will need to maintain sobriety, a steady income and abide by our community standards to maintain residency and once again become a contributor to our great city. We are currently in the fundraising and acquisition stage and welcome your donation towards making the Kansas City metro, a city where #NoOneSleepsOutside.
A group of volunteers from Kansas City’s Uplift not-for-profit spend their free time delivering food and necessities to homeless camps around the Kansas City metro area. They had hopes of offering relief to those most marginalized and desperate. They knew their efforts helped, but they knew more was needed. Each night they left the camps and as they headed home to warm comfortable beds they couldn’t help but think about their friends needing to pile cardboard and blankets together, burn candles, and cling to their pets to find warmth and some comfort on those cold nights. The saying “it’s gonna be a three dog night” became the mantra and later the namesake for the original three uplift volunteers and their quest to end homelessness. Three Dog Night Charities was formed but the name was originally coined by the indigenous Australians meaning the colder the night the more dogs you needed close by to fight the cold. Volunteers TC, Phil and Kerry later called on Katrina and the Schmidt’s to help them to put an end to this cycle and did their research to find an organization born out of Springfield, MO called Eden Villages. Eden Village shared their belief that a cold night without shelter was no way to live. They visited the birthplace of Eden Village and are now working tirelessly to bring Eden Village to the Kansas City metro. Donate today to help build this community for our homeless friends.
TC CLAUDELL (President): Terry “TC” Claudell, President of Strategic Financial Planning, Inc. since 1987. Terry grew up in the Kansas City area and presently resides in Overland Park, Kansas. Married to his wife Cathy, for 39 years, they have four children and three grandchildren. He graduated from Calvary University and is a veteran of the US Navy, Submarine Service. Terry devotes his time and energy to his family and friends. Terry enjoys cross training and yoga classes, in addition to his hobbies of hunting and fishing. Terry supports and volunteers his time for Uplift and Youthrive.
PHIL JORGENSON (Vice President): Phil grew up in a rural town in Iowa, attended South Dakota State University, and received both his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Civil Engineering there. In college he met and married his college sweetheart, Darla. They have been married 34 years. Phil and Darla have three children, two girls and a boy, who are now on their own and living in various parts of the country. They also share Phil and Darla’s passion to help those less fortunate. Phil came to Eden Village via Uplift.org where he met Terry (TC), Kerry, and Katrina. Phil has been driving for Uplift for over 10 years now.
KERRY POOLMAN (Treasurer): Kerry is a graduate of the University of Kansas. Kerry started her professional career as a sales associate for Hallmark Cards and transitioned into the real estate profession, spending the last 24 years running her own rental property business. She is a proud mom of two grown children, Paige and Charles. Happily married to Tim Poolman for 24 years, they enjoy spending time at their lake home, traveling and are heavily involved in their church, Grace Church of Overland Park. She has helped with large event planning for both the children’s department and the youth group. She began her involvement with the Uplift homeless organization in 2015. Her eyes were opened to the great need of people who are homeless. She is excited about the opportunity that Eden Village of Kansas City will provide for individuals who want a real opportunity to move out of their chronic situation.
KATRINA GERBER (Secretary): Katrina is a graduate from Kansas State University with a degree in Architectural Engineering. Katrina worked at several companies before opening her own engineering firm in 2003, BGR Engineers, Inc. Katrina and her husband, Paul Gerber, have two grown children, Zach and Abby. For the last seven years, she has coached volleyball at Shawnee Mission Northwest High School. Katrina was first introduced to Uplift, where she met the rest of the team forming Eden Village of Kansas City, through the Centurion Leadership program back in 2004. She firmly believes that we are called to do what we can to help those who are in need. She feels so fortunate to be involved with an organization like Eden Village of Kansas City.
JIM & JENNIFER SCHMIDT (Board Members): Jim and Jennifer have been volunteering with Uplift, both serving weekly and cooking for their monthly Sort Saturday event, since 2002. The Schmidt’s have made caring for Kansas City’s homeless a large part of their lives ever since. The Schmidt’s not only open their home every Thursday night for dinner and Bible study for their homeless friends, but they also serve overnights and mornings at Johnson Counties only overnight cold weather shelter Project 1020.
As active Uplift Board of Directors, they are instrumental in finding new ways to serve Kansas City’s homeless population, but it is working directly with the homeless that is their found passion that led them to being a part of the Eden Village of Kansas City team. It is an honor to be a part of ending homelessness for each individual we come in contact with.
Kevin & Cindy O’Dower (Board Members): Kevin and Cindy were both born and raised in the Kansas City area. They met at work over two decades ago and still enjoy careers at Zurich Insurance. They have two grown daughters, Erika and Morgan. Kevin and Cindy believe in being outward-focused, which is why much of their time outside of work and family is spent volunteering. In addition to ten years in youth ministry at their church, they have served with various organizations that support the homeless and underprivileged communities. When invited to tour Eden Village of Springfield, they got to see first hand the life change occurring there. It sparked a desire to join this team to build a village in Kansas City.
Brad and Marilyn Simpson (Board Members): Brad grew up in Southwest Missouri and graduated from Missouri State University in Springfield MO with a BS, Operations Management. He met his wife of 42 years, Marilyn, in college while participating in a dynamic campus ministry program. Shortly after college, he and Marilyn spent 7 years working on campuses in ministry with a variety of local churches. Over the thirty years, he has spent his career in Sales and Finance with Canon Solutions North America.
Marilyn grew up in Springfield, Missouri. She graduated from Missouri State University with a BS in Elementary Education then obtained a master’s degree in special education from Southeast Missouri State. She taught Elementary School for several years before she started a preschool at her church with several of her closest friends. She is now retired and watches her grandson 3 days a week. Brad and Marilyn are the proud parents of four children and two grandchildren. Brad and Marilyn joined the Kansas City Eden Village team in 2022 after reaching out to Linda Brown, a family friend, in Springfield where Eden Village began. They were inspired by the Brown’s and Marilyn’s sister-in-law who were involved in the development and mentorship program of the original
Eden Village, leading to a desire to start an Eden Village in Kansas City. They were beyond excited to learn that an Eden Village was already being developed here and quickly joined forces with them. Coincidently, for several years, Brad and Marilyn have prepared chili for Uplift with a group of close friends and found it humorous that the original six members of the board met through serving at Uplift. This Uplift “connection” further sealed their desire to join the Eden Village team. They are excited to be a part of this ministry to provide homes and hope to the homeless of Kansas City and so Kansas City can be a “city where no one sleeps outside.”