Winter woes highlight homeless plight

Published 10:18 am Friday, January 9, 2015

Single-digit temperatures creates need for daytime shelter

As the county reels from the frigid temperatures, the need for a daytime drop-in center in Ironton for the homeless becomes more apparent.

This summer an ad hoc committee formed to see if the creation of such a center is feasible for Ironton’s homeless, whose only shelter at the City Welfare Mission is only open overnight.

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“During weather like this, all they can do is go to the library and work on the computers or go to a fast food restaurant and stretch a cup of coffee,” said the Rev. Sallie Schisler, of Christ Episcopal Church and committee member.

The goal is to find a building to rent large enough to accommodate a washer and dryer, along with a lounge area with a television.

“On a day like this there would be coffee and you could do your laundry and watch television,” she said.

Cost for the shelter would include salary for a staff member, rent and utilities.

“We would try to get everything else donated,” Schisler said.

So far there is a $4,000 donation from a grant received by Christ Church from the Episcopal diocese.

The committee is attempting to secure other grant funding.

“Once we know if we have the money, we can take the next step,” she said. “My hope would be a church would step up. We would like to get ministers together to see if there is anyone who feels this would be a good use for their building.”