Monique Sanders and her three children have lived at the shelter for seven weeks. "We had no where else to go. Literally no where else. There were no other shelters in the area that had availability." They are just four of the 37 living there right now.
"These are the neediest in this community. Some of the neediest. Homeless women and children that have fled from domestic family abuse and sexual assault" says YWCA Executive Director Amy O'Pry. About a week ago O'Pry took over as executive director with less than $1,000 in the bank but says she does not want to focus on the past. "I just really want to focus on what we need. This is dire straights here and that's why I'm here. We are going to lift this place from the ashes and make it a wonderful facility and a successful facility."
The facility needs money for basics like food, water, clothing and electricity. For a total operating budget of $70,000 a month. Providing a safe haven and counseling for more than a thousand people like Sanders. "It's a stepping stone for me and my children to become independent and stable" Sanders says.
But O'Pry says this is an urgent situation. "This is a community effort and united we can make a huge difference. I'm certain of that."
If you would like to help, you can drop off a monetary donation or any of the following items:
-twin size sheets
- toilet paper, paper towels, tissues
-over the counter medicine for adults and children
-first aid supplies
-feminine hygiene products
-hair products for women of all races
-diapers - especially sizes 3, 4, 5
-arts & crafts
-socks and underwear for women and children
-soap & deodorant
-meat & cheese
-plastic utensils, paper plates
710 Travis St
Shreveport, LA 71101-2999
For information on volunteering, call the YWCA at (318) 222 - 2116.
To donate furniture and other large items call (318) 222 - 2117 and ask for the shelter coordinator.