The outside of the women and children's shelter is not marked until the facility receives its new sign. Safe Haven is located at 217 W. Third St. in Mount Carmel.

Haley Church/The Register

MOUNT CARMEL — Safe Haven has had a busy year, serving more than 50 residents at the women and children's shelter.

In addition to helping families get back on their feet, Safe Haven volunteers and director Pat Harlson have worked at several fundraisers to help the shelter stay open.

In August, Ag Days market the beginning of the Pace Car Corvette Raffle, organized by LIP Motorsport owner Kevin List and board members. The car was raffled off in Feburary, with Peggy Bright winning the top overall prize. The ticket sales raise "quite a bit" of money for Safe Haven, Harlson said.

First responders and other law enforcement officials helped serve dinner at the annual spaghetti dinner fundraiser held at Twin Rivers in October. A chicken and noodle fundraiser was held in December for Safe Haven, along with a silent auction at Heartland Worship Center. In March, Little Italy's Pizza owner Kevin List held a mostacholi dinner fundraiser for the shelter. With April came Ribberfest and the "Tasten for the Haven" booth raising more than $700.

Most recently, Safe Haven volunteers served a large crowd of hungry people at the first Walk Up Wednesday held June 7.

The facility has had a few improvements in recent weeks as well. Volunteers painted the exterior of Safe Haven, and Harlson said the shelter will be getting a new sign.

Over the past year, Harlson and other Safe Haven volunteers have spoken at ten different area churches and are willing to visit more in the coming months.

"We always need prayer, we always ask them to cover us in prayer," Harlson said.

Harlson is currently working to gather enough volunteers so that she would be able to go out and visit the other communities that Safe Haven serves, like White, Edwards and Lawrence counties.

"I want to visit these communities and let them know that we are here if they would have the need," she said.

Harlson also wants to visit with other organizations, such as Southeastern Illinois Pastoral Counseling, to find more resources for Safe Haven's residents. Safe Haven already works closely with Hope Pregnancy Center and the educational classes they offer.

Safe Haven will be holding a volunteer fair at its facility located at 217 W. Third St. on Saturday, July 8, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

They are looking for volunteers to fill the following positions:

• Volunteer Office Assistant to manage day to day office duties such as answering the phone and completing intake information on new residents. Computer skills are needed and people skills are a must.

• Volunteer House Manager, all shifts, to answer the door, manage the pantry and laundry facilities, assist residents by answering questions, enforcing shelter guidelines and doing weekly room inspections.

• Volunteer Case Manager Coordinator to assist clients in goal setting, developing a plan of action and then reviewing the plan on a daily basis.

If you are a woman who enjoys working with other women and children while giving back to your community, join Safe Haven for refreshments and registration from 9:30 to 10 a.m. There will also be a shelter tour, brief instructional presentation and testimonials from former residents.

For more information about Safe Haven, "like" the shelter on Facebook.

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