You Never Know Who’s Listening!
Guest post by Terri Bowman, CARING for Children Development Director
This is a true story… It was a cold, snowy winter night in downtown Asheville, NC. The wind was blowing hard with temperatures in the single digits. The staff and youth at Trinity Place Runaway and Youth Homeless Shelter were already inside for the evening when they heard a knock at the door.
Amy Hobson, Program Coordinator for Trinity Place got up to answer the door – halfway expecting to find a homeless or runaway youth at her door. Instead, she found a man in his early 30’s standing on the porch. His clothes were dirty and worn – not unusual for many of the homeless people who frequented downtown.
Nick introduced himself and said that he was out walking and had passed by Trinity Place several times. He was curious as to what kind of shelter it was and what the program offered. Amy came out on the porch (without a coat) and began to talk with the burly-looking man. She told him about the youth we served and how the program worked to help kids work out their problems and reunite with their families.
At this point, Amy was shivering but kindly explained to Nick that she could not invite him in to the shelter due to confidentiality and licensing regulations. The man thanked her and said goodbye. Amy watched him walk down the street and went back inside.
About a month later, she received the following note:
Please put this donation to whatever best use you see fit for the kids! Thank you for the excellent work you all are doing, and please let me know if there are specific needs you have. I would like to continue contributing every now and then as I am able, especially if there are dire and imminent needs where cash of $100 – $300 or so can be of great use.
P.S. We met on the porch two weeks ago.
A check for $500 was enclosed! Looking back on the encounter, Amy is still amazed that this man of seemingly humble means could turn out to be such a good Samaritan.
The moral of the story: Take time to be kind and respectful to everyone you meet!