Group dedicated to helping homeless concerned about COVID-19


SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA)- 5th Street Renaissance is asking the community to help them provide essential needs for the homeless community during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We have a lot of people that have compromised immune systems and things going on that would make the coronavirus very difficult for them,” said Penny Harris-Powell, the group’s director.

The organization operates 18 programs in Springfield and around the state to support members of the homeless and HIV positive communities. Harris-Powell said the coronavirus outbreak is presenting a new world of challenges for them and the people they care for, but there is something you can do to help.

“The biggest thing is money right now,” Harris-Powell said. The group is in desperate need of other items like food, cleaning supplies, sanitation and disinfectant supplies but Harris-Powell said they are now limiting the access to their facilities to prevent the spread.

One group that is trying to help the organization garner donations is the Sangamon County Democrats. County Chair Doris Turner said their group wanted to help a system working for the community during this difficult time.

“We looked at 5th Street Renaissance because they provide a plethora of services; they provide health care, housing, food, really just about anything where they can intervene and just about stand in the gap,” Turner said. “So we thought we would send out a call to action to our membership and they have really stepped up and been a help.” Turner said even others who may not identified as Democrats contributed too. “It’s always necessary, especially when you are going through something like this, to know that people care about the work you are doing.” said Harris-Powell.

You can give by visiting 5th Street Renaissance’s website and donating online.

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