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Sojourner House and Positive Avenues create temporary 24/7 shelter

Published Apr 9, 2020
By: Diane Behm

Eau Claire (WQOW) – In order to more effectively help the homeless, two groups are temporarily pooling their resources under one roof.

During the pandemic, both the Sojourner House and Positive Avenues, a program under Lutheran Social Services, are providing a 24/7 shelter at the Hobbs Ice Arena in Eau Claire.

The temporary combined shelter has 70 beds. In addition to getting some sleep, people can also receive a free lunch and snack, use the shelter’s phone and take a shower. There’s also hygiene products and social workers on-site to lend a listening ear.

Officials say pooling their resources makes it easier for guests to stay out of the elements and get what they need.

“It feels really good. It’s a place to make a safe place for our people and have them so that they’re not out there. It can be stressful at times; I’m not going to lie. But it is also a very nice thing that we’re doing and we’re all working together,” said Alyssa Greene, a family and community services professional with LSS Positive Avenues.

To help keep everyone healthy and safe, staff and volunteers screen guests for any COVID-19 symptoms, clean the facility twice a day, check temperatures, and space the beds at least six feet apart.

If you would like to donate a meal or volunteer during the daytime from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., contact Kim Campy at Lutheran Social Services (Positive Avenues) at 715-864-5689 or email kimberly.campy@lsswis.org.

If you are interested in volunteering in the morning, evening, or overnight, contact Clare Nelson at Catholic Charities (Sojourner House) at 715-450-1457 or email cnelson@cclse.org.

Katrina Lim

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