It has been a positive year for Lake Area Helping Hands Homeless Shelter. Shelter manager Mark Smetana says that the shelter has seen growth in its donations throughout the year and has been able to keep a steady 25 members within its walls.

It has been a positive year for Lake Area Helping Hands Homeless Shelter. Shelter manager Mark Smetana says that the shelter has seen growth in its donations throughout the year and has been able to keep a steady 25 members within its walls.

“We have continued receiving donations and people have been very generous,” Smetana said.

Even with the steady flow of donations, Smetana ran into a difficult decision earl;ier in the year when it was determined by an adjuster that the male dormitory roofs needed repair. Insurance stepped in and provided a check that was only enough to cover the costs of the first building, though Smetana was sure that both roofs would need to be fixed.

Jeff Caroll, with Above and Beyond, says that a customer of the business had reached out to them and made them aware of the troubles Helping Hands was facing with their roofing. He says he called his boss and worked out an arrangement that would get both roofs repaired at a minimal cost. Caroll says the total cost, which included an improved sert of shingles and roof work, would have normally cost nearly $8,500, though Above and Beyond ended up only taking a portion of the money Helping Hands received from their insurance check of $2,600.

Caroll says he is proud to work with Above and Beyond and taking part in the charitable work they provide to businesses around the lake. Earlier in 2019, Above and Beyond were also at work fixing the roof of the Camden County Museum. He says the company never does the work for press; it’s just to help those who can use the assistance. Now, with the roof in excellent condition, Smetana is sure that they will be able to allocate the funds they have towards over projects and continue to improve the shelter.

“This was a big job they took on for us,” Smetana said. “It’s really pretty remarkable and we are so thankful for it.”

Helping Hands has been the only lake homeless shelter since 1993 and averages nearly 30 members throughout each year. Though the shelter is having a good year, Smetana says that they are still looking for donations of items such as Kleenex and other toiletries that are in constant use. And of course, with the cold season coming through, any donations of winter clothing are helpful. For a full list of in demand donations, visit the shelter at 68 Holden Dr, Camdenton. Anyone hoping to help Helping Hands through donations are welcome to deposit any good directly to the shelter.