Take 5 to Give $5: Grant helps Downtown Rescue Mission pay for food, cleaning items

The rescue misson's employees are preparing twice as many food bags each week, and with all 8 of their thrift stores closed

Posted: Apr 22, 2020 6:16 PM
Updated: Apr 23, 2020 1:44 PM

With people losing their jobs during the coronavirus pandemic, more people are asking the Downtown Rescue Mission in Huntsville for help.

WAAY 31 learned how it's just one of dozens of non-profits in North Alabama receiving funding from the Community Foundation of Greater Huntsville to help with these expenses.

Bryce Miller runs the kitchen at the downtown rescue mission. He's in a much different place now than he was just 10 months ago.

"I had no possessions ...Literally I had the suitcase in my car," said Bryce Miller.

He was hospitalized for two months due to a blood infection and couldn't work or pay his rent, but he's much better off now.

"To wake up every morning to know that every basic need I have is taken care of," Miller said.

Nowadays Miller is helping people who struggle like he once did, but the coronavirus is making it even tougher for them to survive. The Downtown Rescue Mission said donations are significantly down since the coronavirus pandemic hit America.

"For the last couple of weeks, we're not seeing that much of the donations coming in," Miller said.

They are preparing twice as many food bags each week, and with all eight of their thrift stores closed, they're also not receiving their normal amount of revenue to pay for operations.

Rescue mission President and CEO Keith Overholt told WAAY 31 the emergency relief fund through the Community Foundation of Greater Huntsville will help feed people in need.

"So we're making sure that everybody who is laid off and furloughed or whatever, make sure they get food as well and the food that we supply here," Overholt said.

The grant will also go toward cleaning supplies, hand sanitizer, and other supplies they need for the community and guests.​

"There is a lot of product that we are going through that we normally don't go through​," Overholt said.

While the grant will help keep the mission afloat for now, Miller and other employees know they'll continue needing generous donations from the community.

WAAY is partnering with Toyota and the Huntsville/Madison County Chamber to support Take 5 to Give $5 for The Community Foundation of Greater Huntsville.

Take 5 to Give $5 is a giving campaign to help support nonprofits in the greater Huntsville area who are serving on the frontline of the coronavirus response. The initiative is part of #GivingTuesdayNow — a global day of giving on May 5, 2020.

To donate go to communityfoundationhsv.org or for text to give, text "GiveHSV" to 44-321.

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