Service Opportunities: PADS (Public Action to Deliver Shelter)
PADS Transitional Housing at St. Christopher’s: June 12–25.
Have you wanted to help the homeless in your community, but didn’t know how to get involved? If the answer is yes, and you have the time between June 12th and 25th to offer your assistance and/or resources, we urge you to join us in providing a Transitional Shelter program at St. Christopher’s.
The Transitional Shelter program differs slightly from the overflow emergency shelter St. Christopher’s hosted on the 3rd, 4th and 5th Fridays during this past Fall and Winter. The summer program gives a prescreened group of 15 working homeless people a stable environment for a two-week period, during which they can work on increasing their earning potential, reducing outstanding debt and strengthening basic life skills.
During this time these 15 guests — single adults, families and veterans — are asked to be responsible for maintaining their sleeping areas and preparing their own meals. In the evening, they participate in on-site counseling sessions that cover relevant topics such as budgeting and tenant responsibilities. Ideally at the end of the two-week program our guests will leave more prepared to meet their individual life challenges and begin to transition toward permanent housing.
How can you help? Summer volunteer opportunities involve supplying breakfast and lunch supplies which the participants prepare themselves. Dinner volunteers can either provide dinner foods and let participants prepare their meal, or prepare the meal themselves. It is your choice. Sign-up sheets for these vital volunteer opportunities are posted in the parish hall.
St. Christopher’s has been a Transitional Shelter site for a couple of summers now, and the program is an enormous success. The guests are highly complimentary of their stay in our parish hall, commenting that the quietness of the space and the dignity afforded them boosted their spirits and helped them move forward. Please join us in once again creating such an environment of hospitality and productivity. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact St. C’s coordinator Emily Culbertson.
Also, if you’d like to be involved, but the timing conflicts with your summer plans, PADS is offering Transitional Shelter in other area churches and synagogues throughout the season. Please contact the West Suburban PADS Shelter Manager for more information on where, when and how you can help.