I was running a little late tonight and arrived at the parking lot just before 6pm. It was a warm evening--in the low 80s--but not unpleasant. Mike and Brent were already there and talking to a couple of visitors. Michelle came a few minutes later.
Tonight seemed to be clothing night--there was a big demand for men's socks, men's underwear, T-shirts, and pants, and, fortunately, we were able to find correct sizes for almost everyone. At first we didn't have the correct sizes for one man, and he left to wait for the shelter across the street to open. Shortly thereafter, however, we discovered the needed items in another box. We waved for him to come back over and gave him the articles. Another man was recently homeless. He had been unable to find an affordable apartment. Although he had enough money to stay for a couple of weeks at a cheap motel, if he did that he would not have enough for the deposit on an apartment if he does find one. So, for the time being, he is staying in the shelter, which is probably a wise move on his part. He seemed to have a good plan for escaping homelessness and I am optimistic about his chances. Yet a third man had worked at the university food service for ten years. The company recently let him go to cut costs, and, as a result, he is staying in the shelter. We are trying to help him find a new food service or possibly janitorial job.
We gave out around 30 bags of food and I'm guessing helped 30 to 35 people tonight. We also distributed cold water, the clothing I already mentioned, some boots, and some toiletries. When we finished helping the last man the shelter had already been open for 10 minutes. We left around 7:10.
Please pray for, and care for, the poor.
(Officer Dan handed out stick-on police badges to some of the Beacon House kids.)