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Change being collected for homeless shelter

| September 18, 2012

The Second Chance Homeless Shelter is in the middle of spare change drive.

About 15 containers asking for change for the homeless have been left at local businesses and facilities.

“All proceeds benefit the various needs we have in running the shelter,” said Barb Lewis, office manager. “There is always a need for money and gift cards to grocery stores, Wal-Mart and gas stations.”

The homeless shelter is operated by the Greater Coshocton Community Development Corporation, which took over the facility in January 2012. It was formerly operated by Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church.

“We’ve been keeping it going since the reopening (in September 2011) and have helped a number of people,” Lewis said. “I believe the total is 130 since 2011.”

The shelter isn’t just a place for someone to stay while they are down on their luck. It also offers a case management program if people request it.

“We can help them with resources and guidance in finding work and housing,” Lewis said. “We do this by partnering with other organizations in the community like Job and Family Services to help them find jobs and get their GED. If they are looking to further themselves with a higher, secondary education we can also help them take the steps they need to find the information on how to pursue that.”

Lewis said the shelter also helps its clients with the transition out of the shelter.

The change containers will be out in the public through the end of October and Lewis plans on checking them periodically during that time frame.

“Everything adds up,” she said. “If you have a pocket full of loose change jingling around go ahead and drop it in the container.”

According to the Rev Cliff Biggers everyone doing a little bit can make a big difference.

“We made around $2,000 with this campaign last year,” he said. “People stepped up when they saw the need. Everybody can put something in. I don’t care if it’s a penny. It all adds up.”

Biggers feels the same way about volunteers and is hoping he can get more people to donate a few hours each month.

“We can’t operate without people,” Biggers said. “If we could get 20-25 people to volunteer or even 50 that would be great. We want to get people who really want to help and have a background of providing service to others. The volunteers we have are fantastic, but we can’t expect them to work this like it’s a full time job.”

Anyone interested in volunteering can call 622-3632.

“We will be more than happy to tell you about the application process,” Biggers said. “It won’t take long to get you up and running and through orientation.”

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Category: People & Places

About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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