The City of Riverbank is seeking donations for the local homeless population. City staff is currently accepting items at City Hall North, 6707 Third St., in downtown Riverbank. City of Riverbank Senior Management Analyst Norma Torres-Manriquez explained that there is an immediate need for warm clothing, blankets, and various winter items. They are in need of hand warmers, socks, coats, jackets, gloves, hats, scarves, thermals, blankets, towels, toiletries, tents, tarps, and non-perishable food items.
“Our goal is to distribute the collected items on January 26 during the Point in Time Homeless Count,” stated Manriquez. “After the 26th our goal is to continue the collection effort for items so that we can start collecting for the Homeless Shelter project that we hope can start providing some services (laundry and showers) by this summer.”
The Stanislaus County Homeless Point-In-Time Count is scheduled for Jan. 26 and they are in need of volunteers. The count will assist the county in understanding how many people are experiencing homelessness in the community. Some of the City staff will be participating in that PIT event next week.
“The annual homeless count is always a struggle for us because many of the homeless really do not want to talk to us; perhaps because they mistrust us or maybe they really just want to be left alone,” added Manriquez. “But we will make every effort to gather the most accurate representation of the number of homeless in Riverbank.”
The city will be hosting a breakfast from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Jan. 26 for the homeless at the Riverbank Scout Hall, 3017 High St., in Riverbank. They will offer guests coffee, donuts, and breakfast burritos.
“With the cold weather that we have been having we thought that having a warm place to get out of the cold might draw our local homeless to join us,” said Manriquez. “We will have a team of six volunteers that will be trained to complete the State mandated survey for each homeless community member. Since we know that not all the homeless will be willing to join us for breakfast a few of the volunteers will canvass the city during the morning hours in search for homeless individuals.”
For more information or questions, call 209-863-7122.