THE UNITED WAY OF GENESEE COUNTY (serving Shiawassee County) along with the Salvation Army Owosso Citadel, teamed together to provide a warming center for adult men and women for the next two months. A ribbon cutting was held in the basement of the Owosso Salvation Army location at 302 E. Exchange St. on Wednesday, Jan. 31.
In the photo are (from left) United Way Regional Coordinator Caleb Senn, Board Chairman Christopher Estes, United Way of Genesee Co. (serving Shiawassee County) CEO James Gaskin, Salvation Army Lieutenant Jon Tamayo, and warming center coordinator Shelly Ochodnicky.
Hours of operation for the new warming center are 8 p.m. through 7 a.m. daily until Saturday, March 31.
Tamayo predicted by opening day on Thursday, Feb. 1, the center would already be assisting several people, and by the first weekend it is estimated that as many as ten to 15 individuals will be in attendance per night.
“Moving forward, the United Way in Genesee County is responsible for stewarding the work of the United Way in Shiawassee County, and we’re certainly excited about that. There will be great value brought with this regional approach, with part of that value being returned right here,” stated Gaskin.
Volunteers are needed. If interested, please contact Ochodnicky at (989) 277-0769. The warming center is also seeking donations of boxed games, DVDs, and adult coloring books and pencils/crayons.
In related news, the next meeting of the Shiawassee Homeless Coalition is planned for 10 a.m., Friday, Feb. 9 at the Memorial Healthcare Auditorium to continue with crucial deliberation regarding the current homeless population.
(Independent Photo/Karen Mead-Elford)