Bowling Green Daily News. January 29, 2022.
Editorial: Consider helping a local African American museum in its moment of need
As the weeks pass since Dec. 11, we learn more and more about the extent of the local damage and losses that resulted from the deadly and historic tornado outbreak in Kentucky.
To date, much of the focus – appropriately so – has been trained on the individuals and families whose lives and livelihoods were upended and forever changed by the tragic events. There are many other types of victims as well, including important documents and artifacts related to southcentral Kentucky’s African American history.
Bowling Green’s African American Museum at 1783 Chestnut St. actually escaped the tornadoes themselves with what appeared to be relatively minor damage. However, on Dec. 22, an electrical fire ignited at the facility due to storm-loosened wiring. Firefighters arrived quickly enough to spare the structure from catastrophic damage, but a number of objects held inside were exposed to water as the fire was being fought.
A recent report by the Daily News’ Aaron Mudd said museum officials have worked closely with Western Kentucky University personnel to dry out and/or freeze nearly three dozen boxes of items that are now in need of repair, conservation and preservation attention. Meanwhile, work is underway to assess the full scope of the damage to the museum’s building and collections, according to museum board Chairman John Hardin, a professor emeritus at WKU.
The museum is raising money in hopes of hiring a Kentucky-based conservator to assess the collection and recommend a treatment plan for the damaged objects. The museum also wants to purchase a new computer to inventory the collection and secure a new space for the museum. Once those goals are complete, the museum wants to establish a permanent endowment to help resume operations and eventually hire a full-time curator.
“The goal is ultimately to recover, document, preserve and present African American history in the Bowling Green area,” Hardin said, describing the museum’s mission. When it was open, it did not charge visitors admission. Instead, it asked for voluntary donations,” Mudd wrote in his Daily News article.
A GoFundMe campaign has been established to aid the museum in its recovery and mission. As of this writing, nearly $2,000 of the $5,000 goal has been raised, and we encourage all who are able to consider donating to this important cause. (Visit this website to learn more or to donate: https://bit.ly/3GVEN3z.)
This museum has been a valuable hub for research and preservation of this area’s rich African American history for nearly a decade, and we look forward to its continued contributions to our community in the decades to come. The organization needs a boost in order to overcome an unforeseen hurdle, however, and we’re hopeful that residents see fit to help the museum during its time of need.
Frankort State Journal. January 28, 2022.
Editorial: Homeless deserve our help not our pity
A story featured in Wednesday’s edition about a woman who was recently arrested for squatting in an unfinished East Frankfort house highlights a larger problem — linking those who are homeless with available resources in our community — especially in cold weather.
The 33-year-old female was charged with second-degree burglary, a Class C felony, for sleeping in a house that was under construction on Kendallwood Drive off Rolling Acres Drive. According to weather records, the temperature at the time was just above freezing.
Per her arrest citation, she was found lying on the floor in one of the bedrooms and allegedly told Frankfort Police that she had permission to be there. The property owner said she did not.
It appears as though she hadn’t attempted to steal anything in the house, but rather was in need of a place to sleep that was out of the elements.
Homelessness continues to be a common problem in Frankfort these days and the coronavirus pandemic has seemingly exacerbated the issue. However, there are local organizations and services that can help the homeless — both women and men.
The Franklin County Women and Family Shelter, located at 303 E. Third St., has 13 beds for single women 18 and older, as well as two-bedroom apartments with eight total beds for families, including couples and men with children.
Office hours are Monday through Friday from 9 am to 5 pm The shelter also has a 24-hour hotline available by calling 502-320-3620. For more information, visit www.fcwomenandfamilyshelter.org
Located at 208 W. Campbell St., Simon House operates seven units to house homeless women who are 18 and older, are pregnant and/or have children. It also provides temporary shelter at Days Inn that serves homeless men and women.
In addition to shelter, Simon House also provides assistance for low-income families in the community who are facing economic challenges, as well as essential items such as food, clothing and baby needs. The emergency hotline, which is staffed 24 hours a day, is 502-320-3620. For more information, visit http://www.simonhouseky.org/.
ACCESS Soup Kitchen and Men’s Shelter, which is located at 311 W. Second St., provides at least one nutritious meal seven days a week and temporary shelter for men on a night-to-night basis. Those in need of assistance can call 502-223-5179 or visit the website at http://www.accesssoupkitchen.com/
If you or someone you know is struggling with homelessness, reach out to one of these organizations. For those who are able, consider giving your money or time to help these local causes.
Homeless people don’t deserve our pity, they deserve our help.
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