Our Friend Richard and More

Campaign Created by: Streets Chapel
Tax ID number: 84-2741754
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The funds from this campaign will be received by Justin Dillie.


Goal : $2,500

Raised : $200

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     In 2019 Streets Chapel was formed as a 501(C)(3) by Justin Dillie to help individuals experiencing homelessness.  For now, we simply enter homeless camps in the surrounding Columbus, Ohio area and give food, clothing, and other items of need with the desire to build relationships.  Then in July of 2020, after the state of Ohio began re-opening from the coronavirus shutdown, we met a man that would soon become our friend and part of the Streets Chapel team, Richard.

     A Vietnam War veteran with absolutely no family, Richard was staying in a tent on 10 acres of wooded railroad property located just outside of downtown Columbus.  The land he was staying on was up for sale and he said he was looking for somewhere else to live.  It was Richard who went into an agreement that Richard could put his tent on Justin’s home property for a short period of time. 

     During this time, Richard proved to be a wonderful addition to the Streets Chapel team.  Every Sunday, he was helping to hand out food, and even on some occasions, he would buy propane to hand out.  Helping the homeless means a lot to him because he himself said he had been struggling with homelessness for the past 25+ plus years.

     While being a fresh ministry, we began to learn many things about surviving homelessness.  One thing is that everything is a struggle on the streets, especially keeping warm during the winter months.  Most people living in tents keep them warm with some sort of open flame source (single burner propane stoves and candles).  And inside a tent, one wrong move will be devastating.  Which was what happened recently this month.  Richard was in his tent, using a propane burner on a 1-pound propane tank that was accidentally knocked over.  His tent and all his contents when up in flames within one minute.  By the grace of God, Richard was able to make it alive. 

     This incident was a true eye-opener in terms of the struggle of those experiencing homelessness.  This past winter alone, like other ministries, Streets Chapel handed out over one hundred of the 1-pound propane tanks.  No more do we want to contribute to these unfortunate mishaps.  Hopefully, this coming winter we will have a safer way to heat tents so that fewer accidents take place.  Meanwhile, we want to redirect our focus on helping people escape the grasp of being homeless. 

Starting with our friend Richard, how will $2,500 help?

·         Instead of staying in a tent waiting to find a permanent home, we want to provide Richard with a camper/travel trailer that is in livable condition.  We are confident that we will be able to find one used for $1,500or less that will require little work.  The rest of the $2,500 balance will go towards registration, repair, solar panels (in efforts to help against climate change and to lower electric expenses) transportation, and possibly the first month of lot rent needed.  

·         As of now, we found a long-term campground that charges $240 a month for lot rent.  This location has electric, water, and sewage hookup.  This is a reasonable rate for someone like Richard who gets a little over $500 a month of social security.

·         During the time staying in this camper, Richard (and future guests) will have a safe place to stay while waiting for his (their) turn on the government assistance waiting list.  Also, we will continue to search for affordable housing.  We are applying everywhere we can, even out of state.  The more resources we find, the better.  Streets Chapel is not a state ran organization, there we do not desire to be limited by state borders (but understand, we are also just getting starting).  i.e., We found an income-based senior living center in Flint, Michigan that we reached out to for Richard to apply for.


What does the future of Streets Chapel look like?

·         Streets Chapel will not stop at a camper in an RV park.  Instead, we want to do something bigger to help more people.  We would like to either building a tiny house community or an RV park dedicated as transitional housing for the homeless. 

·         With the above-mentioned transitional housing, Streets Chapel wants to have a workshop to help educate people in wood and metalworking and other job skills and hopefully send people to a nearby career academy to start a journey in a new field.


How else to support Streets Chapel?

·         First and foremost, pray for Streets Chapel.  Pray that our ministry grows so that we make a bigger impact on the lives of others.

·         Check our Facebook shop often.  We want to begin offering products handcrafted by our very own, Justin Dillie.  The immediate goal for this is to be able to hire our very first employee either working in the garage with Justin or doing ministry outreach in the camps.

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