This is the 32nd season of hosting Interfaith Shelter Network (ISN) guests here at Pacific Beach UMC. The shelter program is where more than 200 homeless men, women and children receive shelter and other services for a two week period. Over the years, the demographic composition of shelter guests has changed; we are seeing more single parents with children and extended families. Our guests will arrive Saturday, January 13th, to officially launch the start of the two week period at PB UMC. Each guest in the ISN is pre-screened and receives additional case management support in their endeavors to get their lives on more solid footing. The guests will be at the church from 5:00 pm in the evening to 7:00 am the next morning during their two-week stay. They will sleep, shower, and eat their breakfasts and dinners at the church. As each guest leaves during the day – for work, job hunting, going to school, or Sunday worship services – we will send them off with a healthy sack lunch.
PB UMC ministries, in collaboration with the Interfaith Shelter Network and other organizations, have helped provide some immediate survival demands for adequate food and health service needs for over 30 years. Continuing this ser- vice tradition is achieved with the contributions of members and friends who generously donate their talents, gifts, and services.
Volunteer recruitment will begin the month of November, with sign-up sheets located in the church narthex after each worship service. There is a variety of volunteer opportunities, but the most critical needs are overnight supervisors; dinner hosts; lunch hosts; January 13th set-up, including picking up guests’ luggage and cots; then clean-up, on January 27th, involving shelter break-down and washing bed linens.
During December, donation boxes will be placed in the narthex to collect personal care items such as deodorant, travel size hand and body lotion, gloves, socks, soap, toothpaste and brushes, feminine hygiene items, razors, and shampoo and conditioners.
Along with my fellow coordinators, Betty J.and Steve F., we thank you for your support and service. Together we are looking forward to hosting and displaying our genuine PB UMC hospitality in welcoming guests.
Hepatitis-A infections create an additional concern, especially among the populations most at-risk, and among the service providers for these populations. During our final ISN Orientation we were told that to date, no one in the homeless population has refused getting vaccinated. Our case manager will also encourage each shelter guest to get vaccinated. Vaccination is the best safe guard; however, the simple act of washing hands with soap and hot water before eating, preparing, or serving food is equally important.
For questions and inquires please contact the Church Office.