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The Daniel Pitino Shelter

Katy Holland, Features Writer

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The Daniel Pitino Shelter is a landmark in Owensboro, Kentucky because it welcomes anyone severely struggling to meet ends and has lost everything he/she owned. This three-story shelter shelter offers a place to sleep and eat there for no cost. This shelter was started 1994 by Rick Pitino and Father Bradley, an Owensboro Catholic priest. It is located on 501 Walnut Street, and this building consists of 22,000 square feet.

In April of 1994, the facility now known as the Daniel Pitino shelter was begun. The facility was named after Rick Pitino’s son who passed away at a very young age due to a child illness. Father Bradley, who ran St. Stephen’s Cathedral, wanted to help Pitino fund this loss and medical bills by offering something in Owensboro. They decided on a soup kitchen and sleeping area for homeless people in Owensboro. Pitino’s only request was to name the shelter after his beloved son.

This non-profit shelter supports organizations that offer both emergency and transitional housing and provide food, health care, essential services (bathing), and educational life skills, legal aid sources, and electronic (computers) training within the building. This is to help these people who are homeless get back on their feet and start over in this world. This supportive housing program serves a safe and secure place for homeless families be welcomed to a healing process and begin a new direction. This program has successfully moved homeless persons from emergency shelter through transitional housing and into permanent residency, all while supporting their needs and offering primary living services and resources. This shelter serves sixty-five individuals, fifty transitional, and fifteen emergencies.

The success this shelter has brought over the years has been all thanks to this loving community. The community’s support was mostly local, but other shelter agencies, businesses, industries, and other individuals reach out to the shelter as well. Their gracious donations provided support that enabled the shelter to meet the needs of the homeless. Without the donations, the financial aspect would have not been met, and the shelter would have not made it this long.

When I volunteered there, and have before many times with my father’s work, we start around 10:30 getting the food prepped and ready. The soup kitchen is a large open kitchen that overlooks the cafeteria. Once the food is ready, we set it over heat lamps, and we all stand behind the table as the shelter individuals come in. It is so rewarding to see their smiles and to hear “thank you” multiple times. This opportunity is very rewarding, and it gives you a sense of happiness that a good deed can go so far in helping people on this community. This highly successful, cumulative effort of the entire community serves as a template for other areas focusing on providing supportive services to the homeless.

Getting involved would very much impact this community and the people in this community. You can simply visit http://www.pitinoshelter.org/index.htm and learn how to get involved and when you can help out. You can also schedule tours that show you what the shelter is made of and how it looks. The tours are also offered to someone in need of housing and shows the participants how this shelter will assist them.

 

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The Daniel Pitino Shelter