To the editor:
"Where there's a will, there's a way!" The Coalition of Homeless Concerns has finally located a place to help people get off the streets in this terrible heat! It is because Father Charles and his congregation did not say no to our plea for help and opened the newly air-conditioned St. John's School gym to us. Since that time, a tremendous volunteer effort has transpired, getting sheets, mats, volunteers to keep this shelter open each evening.
Meals have, quite miraculously, arrived almost every evening. A local laundry is washing sheets daily for free. A delivery service is picking them up and delivering them. Contributions have begun coming in.
It is a caring Lawrence community, and a very grateful family of some 30-40 people inside, respectful of each other, and caring for the most vulnerable in their midst. We have all learned from each other.
But the shelter will close on Aug. 13 with the arrival of the new school year. Will we once again permit these citizens to wander our streets, somehow invisible to the rest of us? Until one dies of dehydration; one is run over in an alley by a hit-and-run driver?
Can this caring community, somewhere, somehow identify Some Place that will provide shelter with dignity and respite for weary human beings throughout the year? And couldn't we, together, provide permanent, single rooms, a roof over one's head, for people who need this much to get a toe-hold on the ladder up?