By Trisha Smith Salvation Army, Development Director
This morning did you get out of a warm bed followed by a steamy shower and then sip on a cup of hot coffee before you began your day? We often start our daily routine in the same way each morning taking little account for the weather outside.
Unfortunately, for individuals experiencing homelessness, the weather impacts each minute of their day. They may have woken up this morning protected from the overnight frigid temperatures, thanks to the efforts of The Shelter House, but now face the day uncertain of where to find safety from the extreme weather. There is a need here. The Johnson County Local Homeless Coordinating Board and many of its supporting agencies worked to provide a daytime space during the winter months to allow individuals a warm, safe place to be. The Johnson County Salvation Army volunteered to host the Winter Day Shelter and, as of January 11th, has been opening the Dining Hall doors Monday-Friday from 9am-11:30am.
The Johnson County Salvation Army, Shelter House, DVIP and community volunteers have joined together to welcome everyone with a warm smile, providing a place to be shielded from the cold and a hot breakfast. Donated supplies are truly essential in this effort for it to be successful. Table to Table delivers donated food items from local grocery stores and restaurants each day. The Free Lunch Program donated meal support supplies and community members have generously donated blankets and coats.
The Winter Day Shelter is doing what I believe is one of the true missions of human services- working together to help meet basic human needs. Each day you can see snap shots of the shelter
It is the woman who thanks you each morning as she would be standing out in the cold if the door was not opened.
It is the gentleman whose eyes well with tears of gratitude for a place to belong.
The individual that is thankful for a warm meal rather than searching for food left behind by others.
I am privileged each day to be a part of this experience. Join me-volunteer or donate. The Johnson County Salvation Army is serving as the coordinator of volunteers and donations. Reach out today, we all can make a difference if we work together!