Metro Ministries (MM), a charitable organization providing services to the homeless, opened in October 1982, and has since added Gabbard Clinic, open on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
MM also created Loaves and Fishes, which serves two meals a day at two shelters – one for women and children and the other for men. MM provides bus tokens for job interviews or doctor’s appointments, hygiene packages for the homeless that contain a toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo, socks, underwear, condoms and a brochure for the Coastal Bend Aids Foundation.
Many community partners help MM including HUD, The Kiwanis Club and the City of Corpus Christi. HUD provides funds for the men’s shelter based on the men using the shelter meeting certain criteria, such as being 60 years of age or older, or receiving SSDI, or under the care of MHMR, or with evidence of past drug or alcohol problems.
MM requires men using the shelter to have income, 70% of which is retained by MM and put into savings for the individual to be used for obtaining an apartment within the individual’s budget.
The Kiwanis Club members come once a month to provide donated eyewear they have collected. The City of Corpus Christi provides funds that MM uses to help clients with utilities.
Currently, Metro Ministries has three TAMU-CC and one DMC practicum students in the fields of social services, case management and master’s degree programs volunteering at their Leopard facility. There are also several volunteers at Loaves and Fishes, but so many more volunteers are needed.
Nursing students and education students are strongly urged to volunteer as those areas in need. All help is welcome because, as the holidays approach, donations will need to be sorted.
Volunteer duties needed include office help, nursing duties, visiting with the children, talking to and helping the men and women in the shelter and various other tasks.
To apply to volunteer, go to 1919 Leopard and fill out an application. After an interview, those accepted are placed according to best fit and schedule.
“Volunteers are the backbone of Metro Ministries. They take up the slack. Homeless people are people, too,” said Tyrese Webb, case manager and acting volunteer manager who has been with MM for over three years.