Anyone in need of daily essentials or who are experiencing homelessness of any kind are invited to the in Ellis County Homeless Coalition’s Let’s Get Warm Giveaway. The event is slated for 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 28th, at First Baptist Church, 450 E. Hwy 287, in Waxahachie. This Giveaway runs in conjunction with the annual Point-In-Time (PIT) Count.
The Point-In-Time(PIT) is a snapshot, following HUD guidelines, of how many homeless individuals are in our community on a single day. On the local level, point-in-time counts help communities plan services and programs to appropriately address local needs, measure progress in decreasing homelessness, and identify strengths and gaps in our community’s current homelessness assistance system. We go out in teams of at least two or more to different locations in the county where people who are homeless have been observed. We ask them questions from a survey, give them a goody bag and invite them to the Giveaway for meals and a hot shower.
We will serve three hot meals to our guests that are homeless, in need, and volunteers. Showers will be available for our guests, if they desire. There will be free haircuts, clothing, coats and blankets available for all ages. Goody Bags with personal care items and snacks for each guest will be given to those who come to First Baptist or who we meet at their location.
If a person/family that is homeless or in need, we can provide transportation to and from the event at First Baptist. Local nonprofits and homeless support services will be on hand to answer questions and provide resources.
There are a variety of volunteer positions open from setting up tables, preparing sets of towels for showers to cooking, serving and actually going out to different locations in Ellis County to talk to the homeless and invite them to the event.
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES – all volunteer positions have been filled except for hair stylists.
The unsheltered PIT survey requires volunteers to identify people who are homeless that are living in places not meant for human habitation, such as:
• On the street
• In abandoned buildings or parking garages
• In their vehicles
• In tents/shanties
• Public parks
• In the woods
• Transportation stations
The Coalition will have these areas identified for you to get you started. You will also invite the people you survey to First Baptist Church for a hot meal and shower if they would like one.
We’ll need to set up tables for the different organizations to present what they have available to the homeless and a place to eat the meals.
Prepare sets of towels, wash cloths, soap, conditioner, shampoo, blow dryers and anything else needed for our guests to take showers. They will also each receive a goodie bag with personal care items and snacks.
Set up plates, tableware, glasses, drinks and the serving area.
Cooking: Help in the kitchen as needed to prepare predetermined meals for our guests and volunteers.
Serving: As guests or volunteers come to eat, prepare a plate for them. Seconds and thirds are okay for our guests. Clean up tables after meals are completed. Refer guests to a guide to walk them around to the organizations or help them with a towel set to take a shower.
Greeting and Guides
Guests can have a shower and meal or just sit and relax with a cup of coffee. They can have seconds, thirds or come for all 3 meals. This day is all about serving them.
You can also ask the guests if they would like to visit the different organizations to learn more about what is available to them.
Goody Bag Items & Sorting – WE HAVE RECEIVED ALL ITEMS WE NEED. THANK YOU!
We need items donated for 100 goody bags. Then we need a few volunteers to help us sort them into individual bags.
Have a drive to get as much as possible at your business, church or with friends.
Beef Jerky, peanut butter or cheese cracker packages,, stocking hat, scarf, wool-blend blanket easy to carry on the streets, easy open package of meats or fish, small first aid kit, kleenex, hand wipes, Stanley winter socks, zip freezer bags in gallon, quart and sandwich, small sewing kits, safety pins, rubber bands, bottled water, toiletries: travel toothbrush, toothpaste, Degree deodorant
Picking up our guests that are homeless, taking them to First Baptist Church and back to their location when they are done taking advantage of our services.
Gathering information about the different resources and organizations in Ellis County that help our homeless neighbors and others in need. This information will go into a booklet that they can take with them.
PIT COUNT TRAINING
Don’t worry! When you volunteer to do one of the counts, we have training sessions for you to attend so you can be prepared. Please attend one of the hour-long sessions. Someone will contact you about these after you sign up to volunteer.
ALL PIT COUNT VOLUNTEER POSITIONS HAVE BEEN FILLED..
THANK YOU FOR YOUR RESPONSE!
Let us know on the registration form if you need a Zoom session instead of in person.
Submit Your Sightings
Have you seen an individual or family that is homeless? Let us know where they are so we can find them on January 28th, survey them for the count and invite them to the Giveaway where they can have meals, showers and find help.