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Clergy and Churches Brainstorm on How to Help Homeless

http://ozarkspub.vo.llnwd.net/o37/KSMU/audio/mp3/clergyandc_5818.mp3

Wednesday morning, representatives from around a dozen churches met with folks from the Salvation Army, The Kitchen, and the Victory Mission to discuss ways area churches can help the homeless. KSMU’s Matt Evans has more.

Since Springfield declared an economic calamity last month, the “Task Force on Homelessness,” which is made up of clergy and church leaders, has been looking for ways to help Springfield’s homeless population. The task force met at the Salvation Army on West Chestnut Expressway. Jeff Smith is a spokesperson for the Salvation Army.

“The pastors in town wanted to see what it would look like if they did help the homeless. So they could go back to their local churches and congregations and say ‘Look, this is our plan, this is what we want to do.’”

Smith says no plan is in place yet, but he says he thinks many churches are interested and are ready to take the next step. The meeting included a panel discussion with representatives from organizations that are already helping homeless people in Springfield.

“We talked about the unique challenges that would occur. And some tough choices must be made when you’re working with the homeless and they’re staying in your building.”

The task force is trying to come up with short-term and long-term solutions to the homeless problem in Springfield.

For KSMU News, I’m Matt Evans.