This time of year, the issue of homelessness seems to come up from time to time. However, for the most part, homelessness is something that we do not see every day and may not want to think about.
Yet, it exists in each of our communities.
West Georgia has a number of homeless shelters to serve men, women and children. Each facility is a little different. But they share a common goal; taking care of those who cannot find homes, particularly in very cold weather.
You will find local shelters in Douglas, Carroll, Haralson, Paulding, Troup, and almost every other county in our area. Each of them is administered by selfless people.
Because of space limitations for the column, I want to focus on one shelter that was brought to my attention at our Pathfinders Men’s Ministry meeting on Friday.
God brought this to the group’s attention through the announcement of one of our members, Larry Smith.
I have known Larry for years. But I was unaware of his involvement in the THS Emergency Shelter.
The mission of THS is to share God’s love during emergency weather.
According to Larry and the Facebook page, THS was founded on January 7, 2014. The facility is located across the street from Club Fitness at 905 Maple Street in Carrollton. THS Emergency Shelter provides food, overnight shelter, showers, clothes washing/drying, clothing, etc. during days when temperatures drop below 28 degrees for two nights in a row. When the shelter is open and operating, the hours are between 4:00pm and 9:00am the next morning.
The shelter provides a number of items for their temporary residents during their stay. This includes, but is not limited to, overnight shelter, food, clothing, showers, washing and drying clothing.
There are other important aspects to this and other shelters; human resources. Volunteers from the community must be used to help run the shelter. Men and women are needed. Volunteers must be ready for a night of sleeping on a cot next to a homeless person.
Larry was a little nervous about the experience at first. But, he found that by doing this type of service work, he has become closer to God and enjoys his time volunteering on cold nights.
Residents vary as well. There are alcoholics, drug addicts, extremely poor families, and those who thought they would never end up in a shelter. Some of these people are children.
Sleeping in emergency shelters in not for everyone. THS, like many other shelters, relies on private donations. Tax deductible donations (double check with your tax expert) can be mailed to:

THS Emergency Shelter
PO BOX 1604
Carrollton, Ga. 30117
Emails can be sent to thsemergencyshelter@gmail.com
As I stated above, there are many other shelters in need throughout our community. Most shelters share similar missions, needs, and services. It is easy to “google” “emergency shelters” or “homeless shelters” in your community.
January and February are cold, dark months. For those looking to help our people in need and developing a closer relationship with God, this form of service work may be just the thing.
It will be difficult for me to ignore THS Emergency Shelter on Maple St. as I drive home every day. I am pleased that I have learned more about this wonderful facility.