The Random Helpers

Posted on Posted in Arts & Smarts, Bike ReCycle, Food Pantry, Garden, Health Ministry, Hospitality

“Patchwork Central is one of the random helpers,” a case worker told me as he stopped by last winter to find out if we happened to have an extra-large coat for his homeless client.

Coats, kitty litter, slippers, cremation urns, wheelchairs, antacid pills, laptop power cables. If someone is looking for any of this, it’s worth asking us at Patchwork. One may happen to be rolling around in a back room just waiting for someone to need it. These items aren’t necessarily part of our regular programming. We don’t have or want more than one, but when someone randomly asks, it’s there.

It’s part of what makes Patchwork Patchwork, and I love it. Every day, people make their way to us, and find that we are what they need, no matter what their need is. We change with each new person who walks through our doors.

  • We are some extra food for the woman facing a family gathering with empty cupboards and who answers our, “Have a Happy Thanksgiving!” by saying very genuinely, “It will be now that we have this food from your food pantry.”
  • We are a hand to hold and a friend to make the call to 9-1-1 for our neighbor experiencing a medical emergency.
  • We are a safe place to shower and to find a moment of humanity for someone who is homeless and deep in their addiction, and our piano offers an opportunity to practice, relaxing into memories of a better time.
  • We are a warm and caring community of adults surrounding a middle schooler awkwardly discovering their place in the world.
  • We are bike mechanics who repair a bike held together with a giant rubber band and who realize that the now unnecessary rubber band is exactly the right piece to fix the automatic shifter on another man’s bike.
  • We are a call of last resort for a hospital nurse who remembers Nurse John from a meeting on homeless health care and who needs two simple over the counter creams that may make the difference for a homeless man being discharged from the hospital.
  • We are a friendly face who asks for a smile and serves up cheese grits that lead to tender reminiscing about the cheese grits that everyone’s grandma used to make.

We bring people together. We connect people with the resources they need. We are the random helpers. We’re here for whoever needs us.

Join us in helping. Your generous gifts allow us to continue to be here providing what our neighbors need when they need it.

In Community,

Amy Rich

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