Leaders of CROSS Shelter Project say they're in serious need and delighted with an anonymous donation passed along to them through County Mayor Eugene Ray.
"We are in desperate straits in the shelter," said Carl Bailey, the group's founder and board chair.
CROSS (an acronym for Community Religious Outreach Social Services) has two separate facilities, both on Hickory Drive -- a homeless shelter, with a capacity for 26, and a group home/transitional home that can house about a dozen people.
(T-G Photo by John I. Carney)
"We're obviously eager for any donations whatsoever," said Bailey.
Bailey said the homeless shelter has an average occupancy of 11-12 a day.
The program has no salaried staff whatsoever and is entirely run with volunteer labor. Neither Bailey nor the facility's director, Dixie Sullivan, receives a salary.
Even so, operating costs are $1,800 a month. Bailey said the anonymous contribution would take care of nearly half a month's operating costs.
Bailey said the shelter is one of the largest homeless shelters in Middle Tennessee outside Nashville.
The shelter recently did its first mass mailing to the business community, and board members are following up with one-on-one contacts with business and community leaders.
Ray, meanwhile, had been contacted by someone seeking to make an anonymous end-of-year charitable contribution.
Ray, knowing of the shelter's needs, suggested CROSS as one of the recipients of the money, and a check presentation was held Tuesday in Ray's office.
Bailey said the contribution would be used specifically for the homeless shelter, which is where the financial need is greatest.
In addition to the cash, some deer meat is being processed to be given to the shelter.
Those who need assistance, or those who want to make financial or in-kind donations to the shelter, can reach CROSS Shelter Project at 575-9954.