Showered in Grace provides hot showers on wheels to Anchorage’s homeless

Published: Jul. 18, 2021 at 8:50 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - A hot shower can be hard to come by for someone who is experiencing homelessness. One local woman has made it her mission to make them more accessible.

“A shower is something that we all take for granted in the morning. I get up in the morning, I take a shower, get ready for work. I don’t think about it until I don’t have hot water. How much dignity do you feel just by washing off in the morning and just starting fresh?”

Jennifer Miller started the organization Showered in Grace, which will soon offer free hot showers to those who need them around Anchorage. It’s in a partnership with the Alaska United Methodist Conference, which is offering its disaster relief trailer until Miller can get her own. She says it’s very much a group effort.

“The only way we’re going to make Anchorage any better is if we all come together and work together,” said Miller. “Put aside our differences, put aside our political differences. Put aside everything and be like, you know what? I may not agree with you personally, or anything you politically believe in, but if we believe that we can make Anchorage a better place by offering someone a shower, by offering someone a meal, we can work on that together. We don’t have to always focus on those differences.”

The mobile trailer has three fully enclosed shower stalls complete with its own sink, towel rack and bench. Miller says donations from different churches and organizations will help her provide soap, shampoo, conditioner and a clean towel to each person seeking a hot shower, no questions asked.

“I’m not trying to preach that you have to believe like I do, love like I do, look like I do,” said Miller. “I’m just there to say ‘hey, do you want a clean shower?’ And meet the people where they are.”

Miller says she hope to obtain 501-C3 status in the near future so she can continue to grow the organization and maybe even provide laundry services some day. She hopes to get the trailer out and about within the next few weeks. You can check out the Showered in Grace Facebook page for updates on where the mobile shower trailer will be and when.

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