Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Hope For The Holidays In Action!

Today after work as planned we packaged up our goodies and headed out to the homeless camp.
I did not know what to expect and was a little nervous but excited at the same time.
As we entered into the woods we saw tents on both sides of our path but heard voices further in the woods so we kept walking until we were met by a man on a bike. Tony was his name and he welcomed us in and gave us a verbal tour of how the camp was set up  and who all was there. He was heading out to buy cigarattes but we would see him again.  He asked a few gentlemen up front to escort us back to the back camp but they declined so Vic and I followed the path and the voices until we reached the main camp that they call "Pirates Cove".
Tonys wife Carol was there along with Pops and a young lady named Annie. They came out and gave us hugs and talked with us for a while. We were told that 8 people live back there now and that the newspaper article has brought them attention and help. Local organizations were out and coming back with more things tomorrow. We asked what they needed so other people could help too. Pops said propane. Tony explained that Pops uses heaters and they are run by little propane tanks. We promised to see what we could do about that.
While we were visiting , the mayor of Pirates Cove, as they call him (Joe) pulled up on his bike with bags of ice and food he had gotten from the church and with food stamps. They were having chicken tonight. Joe is the cook. He was so nice to talk with us and you could tell , a proud man.
When it came time to leave we were given hugs , Pops gave me hugs twice! And Tony escorted us back up to the truck. He thanked us and told us about moving to the camp this past year after losing his job. His unemployment ran out and he could no long afford his mortgage so he and Carol and their kids (two fiesty dogs) made pirates cove "home".
I wanted to take more pictures but felt intrusive by asking so  I didn't. I found a slide show on the newspaper link that shows the camp and the people..here is the link PHOTOS
What stood out to me the most is their smiles. They had three Christmas trees up, and even joked about one of them being a charlie brown Christmas tree because it only had one ornament.
I feel more blessed tonight in knowing these people..and look forward to going back again and getting to know them better.
Merry Christmas!