Tent City helps Toledo's homeless get back on their feet

Tent City helps Toledo's homeless get back on their feet

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Tent City is held every year at the Civic Center Mall in downtown Toledo at the corner of Spielbusch and Jackson.

But on this one weekend of the year it turns into what they like to call the corner of 'Love and Compassion."

"It's that one place where your spirit can relate to other spirits and realize that everybody does matter," said Ken Leslie of 1 Matters, organizer of Tent City.

Tent City is held to raise awareness about homelessness in our community.

The goal is to get the homeless back on their feet and working.

Leryc Barber turned her life around after getting out of a bad relationship and this year is mayor of Tent City.

"You just get tired of all the crap. Got to stand up for yourself and do what you got to do," said Ms. Barber.

Not everybody here is homeless.

But everyone is eligible to receive medical and dental help, employment assistance, free clothes and more.

"I need a social security card, ID and some furniture, a voucher for furniture" says Shawn Weppler.

Volunteers make Tent City run.

Members of the University of Toledo Catholic Student association came to serve meals.

They do it every year.

"And we believe it's not about the food or supplies but getting to know the people and getting them to realize their worth," said student volunteer Jared Malatt.

1 Matters estimates there are 900 homeless in our community.

That's good news because the number is actually d ropping.

But until everyone has a roof over their head, 1 Matters will carry on its mission to break the cycle of homelessness.

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