Sheri Hammond, Volunteer Coordinator Northwest Arkansas Women’s Shelter If you read the previous blog by Merritt, you’ll find mine a little different. (If you haven’t, you should. There is great information in there.) I started with the Women’s Shelter as a volunteer in October of 2013 and took a part-time job here as the Volunteer Coordinator in January of 2015. I also take care of our in-kind or goods donations, both receiving and soliciting. We get so much community support; but, unfortunately, we still are always in need of something. Right now we need spoons, pillows, room fans, and towels. It’s always an odd list! We are extremely grateful for EVERY SINGLE ITEM donated; but I want to share with you some of my favorite donation stories. Maybe you’ll be inspired to step in and help out as well. One of the first regular donations I started accepting here was actually before I took this position. I helped match up our clients with sponsors for the holidays. One of the women who sponsored a family expressed an interest in providing something for the shelter on a regular basis. She asked what was needed. I knew all the typical answers: toilet paper, detergent, cleaning supplies; but I wanted to help her find something that she could provide that we might not otherwise ever have on hand. After asking around, I came up with meat. We rely almost solely on donations for stocking our pantry and refrigerator. bns gold It costs approximately $58 per day to house one person in shelter. Since our average family consists of one adult and two children, the cost is $174 a day. nike air max 2016 blauw Everything is free for the clients while they are here. We get lots of canned goods and staples, and a good bit of chicken. (We do start to run low on food in the summer though.) However, we never have meat on hand: sausage, pork chops, sliced ham, ground meat, etc. Now, at least once a month, we do! Our donor does her shopping about every three weeks and calls me to pick up a nice big bag of meat. Another donation that really moved me came about five weeks ago. We keep a list of frequently needed items, but if I am around I generally know what is needed immediately (spoons, pillows, and towels!!). A woman called and said she had $200 to spend. What did we need? At the time it was detergent. Honestly, we get calls like this all the time, and I’ve stopped counting on all of them to come through. Our thrift store manager called the following week to say she had a young girl there wanting to drop off a donation for the shelter; but she was hesitant to leave it at the store. We receive donations at the store to help protect our location. As I was on my way, she agreed to wait. When I arrived I was met by a young couple with a trunk FULL of laundry detergent. Asics authentique It was way more than $200 worth, but she was the caller. This was obviously a precious and important thing for her, and she wanted to make sure that the shelter received it. Honestly, while we run on the big money donations and grants, it’s the small ones by everyday people that keep our hearts going. There’s the elderly woman who raises chickens in her backyard and donates eggs, the Little Debbie delivery guy who stops by weekly and drops off a dozen boxes of snacks, the local appliance repair family business who keep our washer and dryer running, the summer vegetable patch people who bring us their extras, the people who take time out of their lives to cook home-cooked meals for our clients, the teenager who used her birthday money to buy diapers (not gonna lie, that was my daughter, so much for anonymity), and so many others. But, unfortunately there are still needs in our community that aren’t being met. ASICS Gel Pulse 7 pour Femme My hope is that you’ll find it in your heart and budget to reach out and make a small difference in our community. Maybe you’ll reach out to us, but the important thing is that you reach out!! (Preferably with spoons, towels, or pillows!!!!) (Note: You may reach Sheri to discuss in-kind or product donations by phone, 479-246-0353, ext.