Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Crisis Ministries Needs Your Help

by Lisa Kight
     The TTC Society of Student Leaders volunteers the third Sunday of each month in whatever way we are needed.  This month, we were needed at the Crisis Ministries.
     Crisis Ministries says about itself on its website: “Founded in 1984 out of a soup kitchen in Grace Episcopal Church, Crisis Ministries has evolved into a comprehensive service agency, dedicated to helping homeless people become self-sufficient again. Along with serving a daily meal to public, these services include emergency housing, case management, primary health care, legal services, employment services, and Veteran services.”
     “Crisis Ministries is the largest homeless service provider in South Carolina. Since its founding Crisis Ministries has served over 1,800,000 meals, sheltered over 37,500 people, and helped more than 6,250 homeless men and women become self-sufficient.”
     I arrived and was greeted by some of the gentlemen there for lunch.  They offered me a smile and direction to the kitchen where I checked in with Brad Cashman, the Volunteer Coordinator.  He is a jovial man who loves to cook and his kindness is evident in every word he says.  He is dedicated and passionate about the Ministries and it shows. You can tell he loves doing what he does.
     I was directed to the aprons and put the final touches on the meal that was being served that day. As each volunteer arrived, we introduced ourselves and gave a little information on why we were there.  Some were with organizations; some just came because they cared.  It was great to meet each and every one of the people there that day. 

     The mood was upbeat and fun. Everyone rolled up their sleeves and got right to work with whatever job we were given.  The main course was cooked before we arrived, so in no time the lunch was ready to serve.  The food looked like so much when we began, but we ran out of some things way before we stopped serving.  The donations have not been as available these days, which kept us from serving a salad or fruit that day.  No one eating lunch seemed to notice.  Each of them was so appreciative, it was heartwarming.
     The volunteers make it possible for the Crisis Ministries to continue serving people in need of many things: food, shelter, and a kind word, at the very least.  The faces of each person I served that day were as diverse as you could imagine.  Young and old streamed through the line as the volunteers served a delicious lunch and shared a smile with each person who passed through. Most of the people there for lunch that Sunday offered a smile and encouraging word to us, the volunteers.  It was touching.  I got the most wonderful feeling each time my eyes would meet someone that day.  Some were young, some were old. Some faces were withered and some were fresh and new.  The feeling was light and happy despite the circumstances that I can just imagine some of the people might have been facing.
     I hope that everyone who reads this will take the time to check the website and see what this wonderful organization is all about.   It is a wonderful organization whose only purpose is to give to the homeless.  I cannot imagine a more worthy cause.

 “Our mission:  Provide food, shelter and hope to end homelessness and hunger one person at a time, one family at a time.”

     Monetary gifts are the cornerstone of our ability to provide food, shelter, and hope 365 days a year.  For more information on how your gift can make a difference, contact Steffanie Dohn, Director of Development, at (843) 723-9477, ext. 126 or
      Donations can be received by check made payable to "Crisis Ministries" and sent to:
PO Box 20038
Charleston, SC 29413

Food and Supplies Make a Big Difference!
Urgently needed items:
     • Salad Dressing
     • 8 oz plastic cups and bowls
     • Newly packaged white twin bed sheets
     • New shower shoes (flip-flops) 
Other needed items:
     • USDA Protein, canned meat 
     • #10 (large) cans of vegetables and fruit
     • Foil roasting pans
     • Coffee
     • Cheese, mayonnaise, and condiments
     • Breakfast foods items, whole-grain, low sugar cereal
     • Raw eggs
     • Stocks and broths (vegetable, chicken or beef)
     • Laundry detergent
     • Toilet paper
     • Paper towels
     • Cleaning supplies
     • Plastic Cups
     • Deodorant
     • New, packaged men's and women's t-shirts
     • New, packaged men's and women's underwear
     • Reading glasses, prescriptions 1.75 and higher

They  accept donations daily between 8 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the Soup Kitchen.


If you have a large donation or questions about needed items, please contact the Volunteer Coordinator, Brad Cashman, at 737-8369 or


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