We all know that a regular shower is important for maintaining good hygiene. People experiencing homelessness need regular hygiene, because they are consistently exposed to the elements. Those experiencing homelessness spend much of their time in public places, such as subways, parks, and buses. In these places, they encounter every kind of virus and germ. Regular bathing is necessary to avoid odors, infections, and germs.
Showers are important in a society where hygiene is required for job opportunities and other positive social interactions.
However, there are few places that offer a free public shower around the Twin Cities Metro area.
Public showers might be available in gyms or at the workplace. To use these facilities, however, you need to be a paying member for the use. People who are experiencing homelessness are not likely to be able to afford joining such clubs and probably don’t have full-time jobs at companies where gyms are readily available. Obviously, one can’t depend on the shower at a job which one doesn’t have or at a club which one can’t afford to join. This all feeds into the circle of discouragement from which those experiencing homelessness find it almost impossible to break free. In order to keep up the level of hygiene that is necessary to enter the workforce, public showers must be available.
Those experiencing homelessness often are highly exposed to the street, dust, and smoke found in urban spaces. Those experiencing the lack of a permanent home don’t want to “look homeless.” Most want to maintain proper hygiene and appearance so they do not stand out. Helping to provide them with the opportunity to get clean is a priority for us. This is why House of Charity provides a free public showers for anyone. The showers are open from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm, Monday through Friday. People using the showers receive a towel and soap from House of Charity free of charge. Our free public showers are available at our main building at 510 South 8th Street in Minneapolis.
MAKE AN IN-KIND DONATION
For other ways to give, see our “Other Ways to Give” page for suggestions about making an in-kind donation of supplies for those using the public showers.