By Shawn Chitnis
AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – Staff, volunteers, and guests of the Friends of Saint Andrew hospitality center were grateful Tuesday about the anonymous businessman that saved their building.
“I think I always trusted on some level God would provide for us,” said Siobhan Larimer, the program’s director. “I just didn’t know exactly how.”
She and others were nervous about the future of their nonprofit facility. For years they have provided hot meals, food baskets, assistance finding jobs and creating identification cards. But an agreement between Regis University and the original owner of the building may have forced them to move.
“We are very happy and relieved,” she said.
A member of the Aurora community offered to help. He bought the building and allowed Friends of Saint Andrew to stay.
More than 100 meals are served each day by volunteers who have offered their time for years. Some come from the church connected to this facility and admit Queen of Peace and its congregation could not save it on their own.
“There’s some wonderful people that have been coming here for years,” said Tom Merges, a longtime volunteer. “I was shocked that someone would, number one have the means to do it, and number two would actually do something like that.”
Attention to their situation helped spread the word and find the anonymous supporter. He wanted to help a Christian organization looking out for those in need and working with children. Many others also reached out to try and help.
“I’m very grateful to all of the people that have helped us to get to this point,” said Latimer.
Many of the people who come here wait outside for the center to open. Some may not receive another hot meal that day. Reasons that bring the same guests back year after year.
“A lot of these people are homeless, low income, have mental disabilities,” said Garfield Verdine, a guest who says he has gone in and out of homelessness. “Where are you going to find a place like this?”
If you want to donate food or money as well as volunteer:
“God it’s a blessing, a blessing to a lot of people,” said Verdine.