You make hope possible.

From the desk of Robert Toney, Crossroads Community Campaign Chair

Dear Friends,

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I am writing you today about the Volunteers of America of Greater Ohio Crossroads Shelter, a program that is vital to the well-being of our residents.
Let me explain why . . .

For 35 years, I have served and worked in Sandusky City Schools, as an educator and for 16 years, as a principal for 19 years, and today I work in Margaretta schools. During this time, I have seen and experienced truly heartbreaking situations our children and families face, among them, children who are homeless.

Our community has had its fair share of ups and downs. But none as devastating as knowing children in our own hometowns are carrying the burdens of homelessness and poverty. I have seen these very children walking the hallways at school, with their heads down, depressed, anxious and alone, separated from their peers.

As an educator, of all the things we face, this for me has been the most distressing. How will they succeed? How will they understand that being homeless is not their fault? How can we help them and their family break the cycle of homelessness?

There is one thing that helped ease my worry about these children. It was, and is today, Crossroads. I knew that if my students were homeless and they boarded a bus in the afternoon headed to Crossroads, they were safe. I found comfort knowing there was a safe place that would shelter, feed, and care for our children. I knew that at Crossroads families would find the strength and support they needed to rebuild their lives.

How do I know this? I went there and saw for myself. Starting in 2001, my family and I began exploring and then whole-heartedly supporting the good work of Volunteers of America. Not only did they help children and families, they also sheltered men, women, and veterans. Today they are the only homeless shelter in Erie County. Crossroads is the answer to our community’s homeless needs.

It is 16 years later and I’m a Volunteers of America of Greater Ohio Board Member, volunteer, and an avid supporter of Crossroads. I am also the Chair of the Crossroads Community Campaign.

I'm writing you today, because I need your help.

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Since 1999, we have helped over 8,500 people face and then conquer the trials of homelessness. 8,500 people is an astonishing number to me. I have learned Crossroads isn’t about handouts, this is a real program with real solutions to help people rebuild the foundations of their lives. Here’s the problem. Imagine having over 8,500 people to your house over 18 years, using the kitchen, bedrooms, and bathrooms. Your carpeting and floors would be worn, the plumbing would be crumbling, and there is no doubt the wear and tear would be evident. We have these very issues right now at Crossroads. The facility has hit its breaking point.

Earlier this year we began a campaign to improve, upgrade, and rehab the building. Every inch of Crossroads is being repaired. I am thrilled because it means we will continue to help our Sandusky residents in a time of personal crisis. We will be able to treat them with dignity and help them return to our neighborhoods as productive members of the community. And yes, fresh paint, new restrooms, new flooring, and upgraded technology can do this. These things create the supportive environment in which everyone has the opportunity to thrive.

This is a big campaign. It’s going to cost us roughly $1.1 million to make all of the improvements. Since January, I have been working with Volunteers of America to raise the funds needed. Today, I am proud to tell you that we are nearly 80% of the way to that goal.

If you can, please make a gift right now.

You can be the change our community needs: Now is the time.

DONATE

This is a big campaign. It’s going to cost us roughly $1.1 million to make all of the improvements. Since January, I have been working with Volunteers of America to raise the funds needed. Today, I am proud to tell you that we are nearly 80% of the way to that goal!

Here’s where you come in. We need your help to meet our financial goal and finish construction by the start of 2018.

All of the people helped through the years are a testament to our strong community.

Because of you, I knew the children I saw in the hallways at school were safe at Crossroads. Because of you, veterans are now living in their own apartments and working. And because of you, families are watching their children graduate and move forward into brighter futures. I truly thank you from the bottom of my heart for your help.

Help us finish the construction and fill Crossroads with hope once again. You can be the help our community needs to thrive.

With warmest regards,

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Robert Toney

Crossroads Community Campaign Chair

Volunteers of America of Greater Ohio, Board Member

PS: I am asking you to make a special gift today to help us continue all of the good work at Crossroads.

If you can, please make a gift right now.

You can be the change our community needs: Now is the time.

DONATE