Volunteers needed for homeless shelter

Bartholomew County residents have a good track record of volunteering their time and efforts for important causes, especially ones that benefit fellow residents. The aftermath of the June 2008 flood is possibly the best example, but we have also seen it in the form of regular neighborhood cleanups and large-scale service days more recently.

Another good example of volunteerism in action is the Brighter Days Housing homeless shelter, an around-the-clock, every-day-of-the-year emergency housing facility at 421 S. Mapleton St. in Columbus. It will have space for about 20 men and 16 women.

The coordinated efforts of many volunteers have saved a lot of money in construction costs and kept the project progressing smoothly. Brighter Days officials anticipate opening its doors in late August.

Once the building construction and renovation has been completed, though, another kind of volunteer base will be needed — to staff the facility. Chaplains, in-take coordinators, hospitality providers and cleaning support personnel are among the positions for which volunteers are needed.

Brighter Days represents another good opportunity to help fellow residents, particularly those in need and without permanent housing.

Columbus Township Trustee Ben Jackson and Elizabeth Kestler, director of Love Chapel, have done a lot of heavy lifting to get the project going. But they are relying everyday members of the community to commit to staffing the facility.

That’s a tall order, but one that Columbus has been known to accomplish before.

How to help

To volunteer as a staff member at the Brighter Days Housing homeless shelter, contact Kathy Thompson by email at volunteer@columbuslovechapel.com.