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A ministry of hope and help for homeless and at-risk women and their children has been serving the Region the past 15-years. Named after an escaped freed slave and champion of women's rights, SoJourner Truth House, according to Sister Loretta Schleper, was founded by the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ to serve the under served in the Gary community. Sister Loretta says SoJourner Truth concentrates on serving single mothers and their children. She says women "can learn about self-esteem, they can learn about addiction, they can learn about caring for their children and they can start looking and finding either apartments or housing. And sometime with the women's clothes and with the help we're able to give them, with food and personal items, they are able to get a little bit better start in regard to getting settled."
According to Sister Loretta, some 1500 people depend on SoJourner Turth's food pantry, "when you try to find food for fifteen hundred you don't want them coming all the way across the city or riding the bus in order to get just three cans of food. So we tend to run short of food because of that." She says the pantry faces an immediate to keep the shelves stocked, "we need mostly things that can be stored on the shelf like canned fruit or, canned vegetables, soup, pasta, rice, beans and cereal--items like that." Sister Loretta says for people who want to donate food items that they should call ahead of time so a member of the pantry can accept their items. She says the pantry prefers not to let the food stand outside and to let people to "acknowledge what they have brought to us," she says. Drop off hours are during the daytime from 9am to 4pm.
In addition to donations SoJourner Truth House is always in need of volunteers. Sister Loretta says, "whether a person has computer skills, or whether they help us serve and sort clothes, of they help us put food on shelves and help us pack food to be able to give out." The ministry is also looking for drivers to help them run clients to their locations.
For more information about donating or the many programs offered at SoJourner Truth House call (219) 885-2282. Or visit them online at: http://www.sojournertruthhouse.org.
For the complete interview with Sister Loretta follow the following link: http://z1071.com/on-air/jay-stevens.html
SoJourner Truth helpng recruit soldiers for the Civill War with President Abraham Lincoln.
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