There is a 60 percent prediction of rain tonight. For most of us, rain is good news. It means not having to water the plants, putting a log in the fireplace to get cozy, or making special accommodations so the dog, who doesn’t like getting wet, doesn’t soil the carpet.
For others, however, including our own Malibu residents without shelter, it means soaked belongings and damp clothing all day long. It means borrowing trash bags from the Labor Exchange to use as a raincoat.
For those of us involved in the Malibu Emergency Shelter Project it has meant close to two weeks in a row of nighttime shelter activation in our retrofitted school bus and providing a hot meal to our dampened friends. We’re glad we’re here for them. But the bad news is we have already run out of funds for this year and must think of next winter. This is strictly a local project that does not receive any government funds.
Our annual cost to provide this modest service for local homeless is about $6,000 per year to provide approximately 300 dry person nights. The major expense is to insure the shelter bus. Other money is needed to purchase food when it is not donated and to pay the nighttime monitors and the shelter manager.
The bottom line is we need a little rainy day assistance. If you would consider helping, please write a check to “MCLE/Shelter,” P.O. Box 2273, Malibu, CA 90265. Or if you would like to volunteer to bring food on a rainy night or donate washable blankets or sleeping bags, or have questions regarding the project, you may call Pamela Shatsky, shelter manager, at 457.2151 and leave a message. Thank you.
Malibu Emergency Shelter chairperson
Malibu Community Labor Exchange