Story: Eloise


Red Cross shelter client, Elois Swartz of Katonah, New York, called her local police station to learn of the Chappaqua Red Cross shelter. After four days in her cold and dark home, she needed the comfort of the Chappaqua shelter and hot meals.

Elois lost her husband last year after 65 years of marriage. As a trained physical therapist, she spent 25 years protecting and strengthening her Parkinson’s afflicted husband; the loss weighs heavily on her.

She said, “the food here is unpredictable, you never know what might be coming next, and it is consistently very good.”

Elois enjoys interacting with the staff and with other residents of the neighborhood, an affluent area in which the homes of Bill & Hilary Clinton and Richard Geer are also located.  She said that a boon to the shelter would be for Bill or Hilary to visit, possibly serving the food, a gesture that would erase any social stigma associated with residing in a shelter, and increase usage by others reluctant to leave their cold homes.

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