As we enter a new month with hopes for an end to the bitter cold, many of the guests at OBK shelter have been rewarded for their resourcefulness and persistence and have found homes! Our family of five has found a beautiful, brand new home to call their own! We will miss the helpfulness of the parents and the laughter and friendliness of their girls. Another guest found an affordable cabin to call his own and has connected with our medical social worker, Robin Dilg, to help him navigate his serious health problems and find transportation to treatments. After being on a waiting list for months, a guest found her fantastic apartment in Reed City. We will miss her humor and enthusiasm around the shelter!
It is so rewarding to see our young expectant couple learn how to have a healthy relationship, find employment and succeed at GED testing. We have watched this mom-to-be blossom and mature in the shelter and we celebrate this family reuniting. Now, if they could just find a place to live and raise their baby due in a few short months....
The guests were treated this past week with haircuts by stylist volunteers from a local salon! The video team from FSU is getting to know the guests in preparation for filming guest stories and shelter life.
As we celebrate, so we grieve, with one of our guests experiencing a stroke and being admitted to the hospital. A young father of precious little girls and a baby on the way has had ER visits and learned he has a chronic illness that will impact him for the rest of his life. We ask for prayers for healing for these guests. Our volunteers and guests always step up to support those in need.
Although we continue to struggle with filling our volunteer schedule, many have heard our plea for help and are being trained. Some new volunteers are so excited, they are inviting their friends to come in with them!
Grant proposals are being submitted to extend our season on an overnight basis so those still living at the shelter in April will not be left without "a meal a day and a place to stay". After turning away families due to lack of space, we are looking for additional shelter space to accommodate this growing need.
And we continue to dream of a place, not only for shelter, but to truly integrate the homeless population in our community--to provide job training, employment, affordable housing, and a continued community of support once they leave the shelter family.
We appreciate all those donors and volunteers who are helping our dreams come true and hope many more will come forward to help OBK see its vision fulfilled:
"Guests will have a life of hope, joy, and self-suffficiency"
Rev. James Young