Hunger and Homeless Awareness month draws attention to those in need

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Hundreds of people in South Dakota are homeless and even more go hungry every day.

November has been declared Hunger and Homeless Awareness month to bring attention to the severity of the issues affecting men, women and even young children every day.

Never in a million years did Adam Whitson think he’d be homeless at age 43.

“Not ever,” Whitson said.

Whitson was working a full-time job and making a living, until a few months ago when the wheels began to fall off.

“Me and my ex, we broke up, I had a good job ended up getting fired, because I was in the hospital for an injury I got on the job; almost lost my hand,” Whitson said.

He didn’t lose his hand, but he lost a lot.

“Lost my apartment, lost my job; things went downhill real fast,” Whitson said.

Whitson is now staying at the Bishop Dudley Hospitality House until he can get back on his feet.

His story is like so many who depend on resources like the St. Francis House, The Banquet and the Union Gospel Mission.

“We are all here serving the needs of the most impoverished people in our community,” Bishop Dudley Hospitality House executive director Madeline Shields Angerhofer said.

Last year, the Bishop Dudley Hospitality House served more than 1,500 people, including a lot of children.

“Everyone wants a place to take a shower, everyone wants a place where they can wash their clothes, they want themselves to be clean and they want their children to be clean and this is what all of us here in this community and with the help of our community we offer dignity, compassion, and respect to people who are living in poverty,” Angerhofer said.

Bishop Dudley House has 20 beds for women, but average about 30 women per night and 80 beds for men and have around 120 men per night. 

“….due hear-by declare November 2021 as hunger and homeless awareness month,

Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken hopes this proclamation draws attention to the struggles that so many are facing, but also to the resources that help people like Whitson.

“This place saved me, the staff here, I appreciate everything they do,” Whitson said. “It could be a helluva a lot worse, it really would be.”

If you’d like to learn more about the resources that are available we’ve attached links below.

St. Francis House

The Bishop Dudley Hospitality House

The Banquet

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