Blue Sock Brigade: UU Warming Shelter supporters honored

During its Sunday service April 14, Hood River’s Mid-Columbia Unitarian Universalist Fellowship celebrated the work of 13 members who formed a special team to volunteer regularly at the homeless warming shelter this past winter.

Every other Thursday for the shelter’s four-month season, the Unitarian team took on the responsibility of staffing the shelter for the entire evening and night.

Reverend Andy Wade, volunteer coordinator for the warming shelter and winner of the Gorge Ecumenical Ministry’s 2013 Inspired Service and Action Award, preached at the MCUUF service and praised the work of the team.

“I put out a call for teams at the start of the year, and only the Unitarians rose to the challenge. It was terrific that they completely covered their nights, so the site coordinators and I could sleep easily, knowing we didn’t have anything to worry about.

“I hope we can have more teams next year — not just from faith-based groups, but also from book clubs, gardening groups, whatever. It’s a great way not only to serve persons in need, but also to build stronger community within your group,” said Wade.

As a memento of their service this year, each Unitarian team member received a sock embossed with the words “Hood River Warming Shelter.” The deep blue color of the sock symbolizes the cold of a winter night on the streets, and the gold lettering symbolizes the Golden Rule to treat others as we’d like to be treated ourselves.

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