Room at the Inn prepares volunteers

Alex Belz

The NMU Room at the Inn student chapter is holding training sessions this month to prepare volunteers for its homeless shelter. Room at the Inn is a collection of Marquette churches that take turns housing the homeless.

The training sessions teach possible volunteers the procedure of the organization, such as emergency information and the daily routine of a volunteer. They also teach potential volunteers about the people who have lost their homes.

“A lot of it is about dispelling myths about the homeless,” said Tom Rich, the president of the student chapter. He said that there seemed to be no difference in the way that the homeless and the volunteers were dressed.

“They’re just like ordinary people,” Rich said.

The training sessions make sure volunteers don’t go into the shelter with negative stereotypes.

“Northern students are so generous in this community. This is another way to help out,” said Dave Bonsall, board member of Room at the Inn and faculty adviser for the Student Chapter.

“I think it’s a really fulfilling experience. You’re lending a hand to people who need it,” Bonsall said.

Room at the Inn will be holding three training sessions for volunteers on Saturday, Feb. 7 at 9 a.m. at the St. Louis the King church, and Wednesday, Feb. 11 at 5 p.m. in Pioneer A and Monday, Feb. 23 at 6 p.m. at the St. Peter Cathedral media room. Interested students should contact Tom Rich at [email protected] or visit the Room at the Inn Web site,