Helping people doesn’t always take a big operation and lots of money. A small kindness can still warm a heart, and more. Here in Pierce County we had some frosty mornings in October, so we know we will have plenty more frost and freezing weather from now until April or May.
Here’s an idea that costs less than three dollars. Cloe Jones of Puyallup South Hill wrote an interesting post on Facebook. We connected. Cloe told me, “My kids were looking for an opportunity to serve the community in a meaningful way. When my aunt made a FB post about blankets at Walmart being $2.50, we knew this would be our perfect idea!” Standing in the middle of the Walmart aisle*, Cloe called Freezing Nights Ministry of Puyallup. She said, “I asked if they would be interested in a small donation of fleece blankets from our little family. Because of their excited response, we decided to take the weekend to see if any of our friends would also like to donate. The response was amazing. In our 3 day Flash Drive effort, we gathered 64 blankets for our homeless neighbors! Truly, our community cares; not just with fleece blankets, but I have witnessed the continual love and compassion, and willingness among many members of our community, to reach out and serve one another.”
Freezing Nights provides emergency shelter from November through March. Anyone needing shelter can meet at the New Hope Center, 414 Spring Street in Puyallup at 5:30 pm check in, and vans leave at 6:45 pm to the churches . . . Freezing Nights vans will take participants to a scheduled church location for the night. – firstname.lastname@example.org
Cloe doesn’t know if more people would like to get involved, but she’s ready if they do. She says, “If we start to have more people interested in donating, we will set up a few drop off locations throughout our Puyallup community. If not, that’s fine too. These kids have loved being a part of this little blanket drive; not only are they experiencing the great joy that comes into our lives, as we seek opportunities to serve others, but they are also learning that even at their young ages, they too can be a light for goodness in the world.” It’s always fun talking with Cloe.
If you are interested in helping people in the Puyallup South Hill area you can find more information on Facebook. – facebook.com/groups/430742390946838/?ref=share
If you don’t live in Puyallup, there are people in every community from Lakewood to Tacoma who need help. Cold nights affect both homeless people as well as people who can’t afford the costs of rising utilities. If you don’t think your neighborhood has people who could use a warm blanket, all you have to do is contact your nearest food bank or church. I’m sure you will find people who know about local needs.
Our family had a similar chilling experience when President Nixon, during the energy crisis of the early 70s, with cars lined up around the block, waiting to fill up on their designated odd or even day, and even home thermostats had to be lowered to 60 degrees, which is cold when the weather is rainy and mostly damp. Our family of freeze babies made sure everyone had slippers and sweaters to wear and blankets on the couch to watch TV. It made a difference then and it will make a difference now, especially to families on a tight budget.
*After repeated called to local Walmarts, we could not confirm the sale is still on, but regardless there are plenty of people who would still benefit from a gift of warmth and caring.