Stepping Stone Shelter Seeks Community Assistance
Joe Denoyer - September 21, 2023 11:50 am
The following is a letter from Lori Plante, Executive Director for Stepping Stone Shelter
Stepping Stone Shelter is a local non-profit organization that provides emergency housing for
southwest Kansas, southeast Colorado and the Oklahoma and Texas Panhandle area. The shelter
provides individuals and families with up to 90 days of shelter. This is not just a temporary
lifeline for our clients; Stepping Stone Shelter provides individualized programs for every client to assist
them in becoming stable members of the community. Unfortunately, we did not receive funding for
one of our major grants, so we are reaching out to the community for help.
When a client arrives at the shelter, staff work on getting clients their identification documents that
they will need to gain employment. Most of our clients come to us with just the clothes on their back
and in need of counseling and medical attention. We also help residents identify what skills they have
and what skills they will need to be successful in the work force. Shelter staff then work with clients on
gaining employment and saving money. Clients are also assisted in setting up a budget so that they will
be able to maintain an independent life.
In addition to the residential program, we also provide a soup kitchen that is open to the community.
We provide up to three meals a day for anyone in need. As of late, there are many people in our
community who must choose between paying bills and putting food on their table.
Currently, we are serving 18 residential clients in addition to the walk-ins served by our soup kitchen. To
continue these programs, we need the community’s help. We are funded by a variety of grants and
donations. In the past we have received much of our funding through the Emergency Solutions Grant
(ESG) which is administered by the Kansas Housing Resources Corporation. We were just notified we
did not receive the ESG funding that we were counting on to operate the shelter and pay our staff. We
need your help to keep the shelter open.