It took SanDee Wright Crabtree about a year to go through the hoops to become a volunteer at Way Side Christian Mission and a bit of a struggle to get her writing work shop going there, but it has become a much appreciated offering for the women who participate.
"I did have a couple of ladies meet me on the street and hug me,saying 'You are that lady that does the creative writing at the mission,'" says Crabtree. "I said I was, and she told me how much it meant. That certainly made my day."
It took a year to become an approved volunteer because mission volunteers have to undergo background checks, TB tests and other approval processes. Crabtree's workshop is a monthly writing workshop for homeless women that give them an emotional outlet. The homeless shelter, which is housed in a hotel on Broadway, was leery about the idea of a writing workshop, but Crabtree and some of the women's persistance helped to make it happen. She is currently in need of some supplies to give the women. She is in need of hi-liters, pens for writing, red pens for editing, and notebooks or journals. I asked her if half empty left over spiral notebooks from students would be accepted in addition to new journals and composition books.
"I will take whatever [spiral notebooks, composition books, etc], but I'm trying to get them new ones as it makes them feel so good to have their own new thing," she says. "I have even been looking for ones with cute covers or bright and cheery covers; they are thrilled to get these. It literally brightens their day."
Anyone interested in donating materials for Crabtree's workshops can contact her at [email protected] or by phone at 502-314-7629.