One More Back-Stage Peek
Depot Market Warming Center
Please Send Thanks
Ham It Up!
Radio Free Fl!p: Lay Down Your Weary Tune / Rollin’
Who are the Out-Reachers? They are people who have taken the time and energy to be interested in others, and in this case, others who many of us have been discouraged since childhood from connecting with. Out-Reachers have gotten to know folks without shelter, and to be known by them, as peers. As helpful friends. Not from above them, but beside them.
Out-Reachers are people who have gotten to know where people without shelter are hiding. Where folks have gone to ground quite literally in hopes of avoiding being swept. Out-Reachers lately have been setting up drop-sites and times to leave a box of hot meals. They chat, and gradually learn what specific needs each of their friends has.
And often share with me, and I tell you, things like – we need size (whatever) men’s or women’s boots. Or we need ski pants big enough to fit over regular pants for a large man. Or to replace a tool kit that was stolen at machete-point from a frightened but generous man. (For that one I phoned my big brother, and an Out-Reacher brought her own phone to that man, and together my mechanic brother and that man figured out exactly which tools needed replacing. The tools are due here Tuesday.)
Out-Reachers know where the hot-food distribution points they have set up are, and communicate with each other to avoid disruption in distribution if one of them has a vehicle break down or other problem..
Out-Reachers occasionally take along a new person to introduce to their friends so there can be more helpers. But not often. This is a gossamer web built on trust, and nothing must disrupt it.
One of the greatest honors of my life was when an Out-Reachers I’ve known for 40 years invited me along in a big snowstorm a bit over a year ago. I’d had no clue about that part of her life.
Out-Reachers are key to what you and are have been able to do in this hard, hard winter. And it’s all built on relationships.
Last night was a good outreach night… especially to drive into town and experience less fear about being stuck alone out in the freezing cold if my car broke down.
One night I was locked out of my car on Holly, frozen locks, with not even a cellphone or wallet in my pocket.
But last night I was just finishing sharing batteries and gloves/socks with citizen Anthony who rests outside with his cart and bag. I knew I was safe in his presence and that he would not leave me alone in the cold.
I knew that I could walk to the Depot Warming Center and request warmth there.
A huge relief, knowing our community has shifted towards ensuring each of us has options for warmth & food, during a time when many stay home with their doors locked even to friends.
May we witness the beauty in the cracks of what is broken
May we give thanks.
REQUEST FROM A DIFFERENT OUT-REACHER
Do you by any chance have a small camping stove for my homeless friend outside in this weather in Ferndale? Just something that could boil water, fry a bit.
So what do you think, folks? Can someone help? You could bring it to my house. 2518 Cherry Street 98225.
ONE MORE BACK-STAGE PEEK
A edge-of-town camper recognized my broken truck parked for 2 days. Said he was worried about me, wondered if I wanted him to help work on my truck. I thanked him for his kind offer, but let him know it’s already back on the road, fixed.
Want to make a huge difference? Volunteer for the Laundry Brigade! Washing and drying blankets & clothing keeps valuable resources from being thrown away. We need at least two dozen people joining in to keep up with the work. Right now there are really just three people doing consistent work. Let’s multiply that by ten!
There’s a growing pile of clothing & blankets left behind at the downtown warming center. It can’t be re-used there because of city liability for Covid in an enclosed space, but if such items are washed in hot water & dried on hot, they are perfectly good to go back out. There’s a growing pile of laundry at our Laundry Brigade leader’s house too. Mostly frozen solid. She says, “I want enough Laundry People that they are able to keep it up indefinitely and not do a ton for a week and burn out.”
Me? I want our Laundry Brigadier to not burn out! Please contact me to join in. If you wrote me about this and haven’t heard back, please write again. Email is best, if possible. I’ve gotta get better organized. I can fund a bit of this gargantuan task out of donations, with laundry soap and some utility costs. Many hands make light work.
DEPOT MARKET WARMING CENTER
They may still need a few more volunteers. Some had to cancel because of the snow. All donations have to be brand new, still in the package, because of Covid. They do have hot water, so individual drink packets like cocoa, apple cider, tea, & coffee are great. Cup o noodles etc. Flavored oatmeal packets. Snacks. Disposable forks (they were out earlier today) – cornstarch based if you can. SmartFoods (formerly Cash&Carry) is great. Again, fruit snacks stay chewable even when cold. Brand new socks & gloves or mittens (wool or poly please – cotton doesn’t stay warm when wet). Fleece tubes as neck warmers you can pull up over your nose when you’re with others.
PLEASE SEND THANKS
Please send thanks and recognition to the Park Department! They have gotten so much rudeness about so many things, they could really use some positive feedback! ~ Maggi Kriger
HAM IT UP!
Please someone, come pick it up and cook something wonderful to share with our chilly neighbors. It’s a ham!!!! I’ve also got pasta, cheese, veggies, rice, lentils, soup base. This could be the start of something good! And we have four neighbors who have offered to transport, so we can get your ingredients, pots & pans, and take-out containers to you, and get your meals where they need to go. We can’t take home-cooked meals downtown to the warming center, but we can feed the people who are still out in the cold. We need a bunch of cooks starting Monday, all week. Contact me to schedule: 360-671-4511 Fl!p
Fleece mittens are even better than gloves to keep fingers together for better warmth (I’m sure you know but worth mentioning in your blog).
And there may be hand warmers available from Mallory Safety Supply (used to be called Sanderson’s) right across the side street from SmartFoods. Not open weekends. That’s where I bought my case. Actually had to order the case by phone as the store was out, and their customer service is excellent. 360-734-1110. Wish I could afford more… but I’m thrilled to be part of our community of helping, willing, kind people. ~ Margie Katz, Toad Lake
Anyone shoveling snow for extra cash in the neighborhood! Young people? Unemployed? ~ Jennifer Dannenberg, firstname.lastname@example.org
I am hoping to get the name of a good dog walker in the neighborhood. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks, Tina, Lynn St, email@example.com
I went to a couple workshops over Zoom in the last two days. Amazing work!
Imagine speaking from the oppressor role with absolutely no defensiveness.
And from the oppressed role with no resentment.
We all have been pushed into both categories, depending on who we’re in relationship to. There is no use at all for blame. That just holds everything in place. We’re all in every difficulty together, and it makes sense to resist every effort to divide us.
RADIO FREE FL!P: LAY DOWN YOUR WEARY TUNE / ROLLIN’
Another version of the Bob Dylan classic. My brother saw my first post this morning, and sent me this version by Marley’s Ghost.
Love/Fl!p 360-671-4511 2518 Cherry Street firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’re willing to share your phone with me, personally, I would love that, and would not share it further without your express permission. Nor would I ever exploit it. You might put mine in your phone so if I were to phone you, you’d know it was me. I’d also suggest adding email@example.com to your contacts because that helps keep my emails from going to your junk mail.
If you want to ask me to post something, just email me. If it’s urgent, phone. If it’s a real emergency, call 911.