What a Year 2021 Has Been
Updated: Jan 12, 2022
I could feel the unsteady ground giving way beneath my feet with every step I took. The sound of crushed stone always announces your presence while walking along the railroad tracks.
I was there to offer a small snack and bottles of water to those living along that stretch of track. The sun was blazing down (as it usually does during summer in Antioch), and folks were tucked away in their makeshift dwellings. I announced myself again, verbally this time, “I have some water and snacks!”
In the distance I could see someone near the water and began to make my way over. He heard my steps and frantically told me to stop and not come any closer – I backed away slowly and kept heading down the tracks. On my way back towards my car, the same man emerged from his tent and gratefully received what I had to offer.
He explained to me that earlier he asked me to stop because he wasn’t decent. He had been bathing in the river and needed some privacy. As the words left his mouth, I could see the look of embarrassment on his face. My heart broke, fell into my stomach, and together they fell - landing on the same crushed stone I stood on. That was the day I decided to make the vision I’ve held on to for so many years a reality.
Few things make me happier than serving at our mobile shower program. Every Tuesday of every week since October of last year, our neighbors trust us with providing a safe and clean place to shower – but often they get more than what they expected. Let me share with you some things our shower guests have said:
“When I’m able to take a shower, I feel a part of society again.”
“Ever since I’ve been coming to shower here, I feel like a person again. I didn’t feel like that before.”
“Since I’m able to shower on a regular basis now, I don’t feel so invisible.”
“When I come to shower here, I feel so loved. You can really tell that these people are in it for the right reasons.”
This is just a glimpse into the impact your support makes in the lives of people in the community.
As 2021 comes to an end, I want to take a moment to thank you for all of your kindness and support. Your support helps our neighbors rekindle self-confidence and helps to restore hope. To this day, SHARE Community has provided just under 1,200 showers, and has given out almost 1,700 essential hygiene kits. Not to mention we’ve picked up over 9,000 gallons of trash through our Adopt-a-Block program!
As a reminder, this is your last chance to make a tax-deductible donation and make an impact this giving season. You can either send a check or give online at www.thesharecommunity.com/give.
With deep appreciation,
Founding Executive Director