A Cup of Love seeking donations to open shelter

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

A Cup of Love Ministry is hoping to expand its services, and founders Chuck and Pattie Jarrett are reaching out to the Carroll County community for help.

The Jarretts are raising money to open a temporary shelter at 4032 E. Van Buren in Eureka Springs, where they have fed the community for more than a year. They offer several kinds of soup and desserts from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and open the food bank from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Fridays.

The next logical step, Chuck said, is to open a temporary shelter to help those in need during extreme weather — hot or cold.

“We prayed about the shelter situation and hoped someone else would take it on,” Pattie said, “but it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen.”

Pattie said they are working with the owner of the building to rent-to-own but need to raise $30,000 for a down payment first. They can’t start any kind of construction, Pattie said, until that happens.

“We can’t build until he knows we’re serious,” Pattie said. “We have to have that down payment.”

The temporary shelter would help those who have no place to go in the winter and summer, Chuck said. He said he and Pattie frequently receive calls from people seeking shelter.

“Just 10 minutes ago we turned a person down because we don’t have that yet,” Pattie said. “We have people call all the time looking for a shelter, and we have to send them out of town.”

“It just breaks my heart,” Chuck said. “It feels like we can’t help anybody.”

Chuck said they plan to renovate the building, moving the sanctuary to the front and building a shelter in the back. That would flip the current floor plan, Pattie said.

“As soon as we sign something, we’re going to get on it,” Chuck said. “It’ll happen in a week when we do it.”

To raise the money for the down payment, Pattie said, they will have several fundraisers this month. There will be a yard sale and coat exchange starting at 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 10, followed by a Chili Cook-off from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 17. It costs $5 to taste and judge the chili, and you can enter to win prizes at the event.

Those wishing to donate to the down payment can stop by in person, Chuck said, or check out the ministry’s GoFundMe page at https://www.gofundme.com/a-cup-of-love-ministry. It’s important to raise money as quickly as possible, Pattie said, because winter is coming.

“I don’t want to go through another winter knowing there’s people out there who could freeze to death,” Chuck said. “We’ve got to do what we’ve got to do to take care of people in need.”

Pattie said they are also accepting other donations for the shelter, including cots, blankets, pillows and sheets. She said she hopes the ministry can continue to grow its presence in Carroll County.

“It may be a temporary shelter now, but down the line it could be something we do permanently,” Pattie said.

For more information on A Cup of Love Ministry, visit www.facebook.com/ACOLM, acupofloveministry.yolasite.com or call 479-363-4529.

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