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Elizabeth Summers: More homeless here than you imagine

Posted: Monday, October 1, 2012 4:05 pm

Homelessness is not something you hear a lot about in Marshall County.

I’m sure it is a problem here but not one that is as visible as it can be in larger cities such as Huntsville and Birmingham.

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  • Annie Muss posted at 10:54 am on Thu, Oct 4, 2012.

    Annie Muss Posts: 74

    In your story, you mention that clothes can either be given to Salvation Army (Guntersville) or Downtown Rescue Mission (Albertville). All assistance to people, when they are going through times of trouble, is important and appreciated, and actually commanded by God, but the giver should not automatically assume one agency is equal to another. I don't have a vested interest in either of these places but my experience with one left me unsettled. I am a 100% service connected disabled veteran, from Albertville, and had found myself homeless in another state but with a roof over my head if I came back to Albertville. So I basically had an empty house with a handful of pieces of furniture; no bed, towels, sheets, no refridg, oven, and a lot of other things. What I did have was sufficient clothes. I went into the Downtown Rescue Mission - two times - to ask for charity, something I hated to do and have rarely ever done, and was told no, even when I explained that I was sleeping on the floor and did not have a table to sit at nor a chair to sit on. I was, however, offered a limited amount of clothing articles, that I refused because I did not need them, but when I asked about getting a couch or bed, which were both right there, and in stock, I was told that most things and all donated furniture was sold to fund their programs in Huntsville. It is my understanding that the economy in Huntsville and Albertville are completely different and that Albertville is on the low end of the proverbial financial stick. In Huntsville, there are administrative positions that are being funded by Albertville donors, the likes of which many poor residents here only dream of making. I don't want to tell anyone not to donate to Downtown Rescue, but I think most people that donate expect that they are helping their own neighbors in need and not financing the job position of someone driving a BMW in Madison County.