This week a lot of new things have happened! Well, new
things for me, as I come upon nearly 4 weeks since taking over as the new
Since the passing of both our director and grant writer in November,
the board had a lot of responsibility in stabilizing the clients and the
Last week, I was able to put a couple we were sheltering in
a local hotel, into one of the shelter homes. This is a much-needed change for
them, and they hope to be moving into permanent housing very, very shortly. For
them, this is a very temporary stop along the way to achieving permanent
housing for their family.
I am happy to report that one of our clients called me a few
days ago and said that she was able to sign a lease and would be moving into
permanent housing. This too is a milestone on her journey and allows her to
bring her family back together.
Another couple that we had in a hotel, was not able to get
into our shelter due to having a larger dog and the shelters are full. But they too, were able to secure
permanent housing for themselves. They moved into their apartment on Friday.
So recently, I've put people into local hotels, moved new
clients into our shelter, moved a client out of our shelter, and moved two
families into permanent housing.
None of this happens by flicking a wand or snapping our
fingers! Much of it is done by me under specific guidelines for shelters and under
But over the past weeks I have been learning the process and
requirements that it takes to do these things. It is apparent that none of this
happens without grants and the support, financially and in goods donated, but
also in the volunteer hours, from people in our community that care about the
mission of the Lighthouse Shelter and housing the homeless in our community
with the goal of permanent housing for them.
Over this time, so many have answered my call
for paper goods, cleaning supplies, personal care items, and new towels and
linens. Many of you have sent us monetary donations.
THANK YOU! Again, I can’t say enough how grateful we are for
your help with our mission.
For a long time, we have accepted donations of used
furniture, household supplies, home decor, and clothes. Your home furnishings allow
us to furnish a person’s or family’s new home with things they almost certainly
are still not able to fully provide for themselves because of the transitional time they
This weekend we gave four twin beds and one full bed, along
with bedding for all of those and one more full-sized bed, all because of the
generous donations from people like you. We also gave two couches and two
dining tables with chairs. We also provided things like pots and pans, coffee
makers, microwaves, dishes and silverware. For the people moving out soon, we reserved a
kitchen table and chairs, a couch, and a bed. What a wonderful gift!
Logistically this all is a lot to take care of. First, it
requires being able to take in donations and keep them organized. Second, it means
keeping an appropriate amount of inventory of much needed items. Third, it
takes strong, able-bodied people to get items from donors, to storage, to a permanent home.
As you can see, there’s lots of moving parts. After
overseeing the process this weekend, I have a better idea of what’s needed to
ensure a good use of people’s time and resources.
We need volunteers! Are you available one or two days to
accept donations and keep our locations organized? Are you available to move
big items like furniture? Some may need to be picked up and brought to our
storage, some will need to be delivered to clients’ homes.
If you are interested in volunteering to help those in need,
I’d love to talk with you! Over time I will probably think of other volunteer
opportunities. If you have any ideas of things you could help with, I’d love to
hear your ideas. Your time and energy are priceless to our organization.
This past week brought families back together, into homes
they can be proud of and that allows them to work towards bigger and better
things for themselves. Your help, in all forms, ensures we can provide what
they need, so they can set and reach new goals!
P.S. We are getting low on the following furniture: beds
(twin and full are our favorites, but queens are good as well), REALLY, REALLY
low on box springs of all sizes (we know, people keep them when upgrading mattresses), kitchen
sized tables with chairs, couches, and rocking chairs/recliners. Send us a Facebook
message or email (email@example.com) with a picture of what you have!
Erin, Executive Director