Homeless Shelter to Open in SoHum for Coming Cold Snap
Peg Anderson secured two places for those in need to stay Sunday through Wednesday night. “We just confirmed that Sunday and Tuesday are at the Presbyterian Church and Monday and Wednesday at the Baptist’s,” she told us.
“We are taking people from 6 to 9 p.m.,” she explained. “We interview them when they come in. They can’t have weapons. They have to have some form of ID or we take their picture (which is deleted the next day.)”
Dinner and breakfast is provided to those staying the night. “We have hot food and salad,” Anderson said. “We have oatmeal and toast and coffee and tea.”
In addition, the emergency shelter will provide jackets, socks and hygiene supplies to those in need.
Though volunteers are always welcome, Anderson explained, “I think we have most of our shifts covered. Our volunteer list keeps increasing.”
However, her fellow organizer Yashi pointed out there is one type of volunteer still needed. “The hardest position to fill is responsible men that will be willing to spend the night. It doesn’t mean they have to stay awake all night. There are two people and they can take shifts.” Yashi said that he is still “looking to interview people to volunteer.”
Although the shelter provides for the humans in need, Anderson explained that homeless advocates are struggling to find a solution for the pets belonging to the homeless. “We can’t let the animals in the church because of the insurance policy,” she said. One solution is to tether the dogs outside with a tent. But she’s hoping for other options. “We’re looking for ideas,” she said.
If you have ideas or are willing to volunteer, call (707) 223-3679 if you can help. Anderson said, “There is also a receptacle at Chautauqua. Please limit it to warm clothing and blankets or sleeping bags in good shapes.”
Even better than items is money which allows the advocates to buy what is needed. “Generally money is the easiest,” Anderson explained. “We have donations jars at the counter at Chautauqua. This is helping us buy more sleeping bags and pads.” It also helps pay for insurance for the churches, food for meals and to launder sleeping bags.
Finally, the advocates are seeking a third place willing to provide emergency shelter. “We are still looking for another location because the churches have activities on certain nights,” Anderson said.