By Bec Cranford
Every Saturday, rain or shine, Charles Storne and his team gather early to prepare breakfast for hundreds of people experiencing homelessness. Getting up at 4 or 5 am on a weekend to make grits and eggs isn’t everyone’s favorite thing to do, but for Charles and his team it’s a passion and a joy. I met Charles when I first began working at GWC over two years ago and I knew immediately that he was special. Charles possesses a modest demeanor. He functions as a-behind-the-scenes-type who always praises others, while being one of the best community organizers and leaders I have ever met. This month, I sat down with Mr. Storne to ask some questions about his life.
Q: How long have you been doing what you do?
A: I have been doing this for 26 years.
Q: Why did you start?
A: I have always had the desire to help others from a young age.
Q: If you could give advice to other Volunteers about serving people experiencing homelessness what would it be?
A: Show them that you care about them and that you are concerned about them. Talk with them and you will be surprised by the vast knowledge they have.
Q: What is your favorite thing to do when you aren’t serving or working?
A: I love working in my yard or repairing something around the house.
Q: If you could be any plant in the world, what would you be and why?
A: I love Hostas. They come back every year bigger and better.
Q: What is something you would you like to do with your life?
A: I am doing what I love. Helping people has always been a high priority in my life.
Q: Can you say a little bit about those who serve with you?
A: A fantastic group of individuals. Mom has been helping for about 24 years. I never have to ask the group, they just come and jump right in. We have been together for a long time and I love to see the faces of new helpers and how much they enjoy serving.
Q: What is your favorite quote?
A: “Whatever I can do to help, please let me know!”
Q: What is your favorite book and/or movie?
A: That is easy . . . Ben Hur! No matter when it comes on I have to watch it.
Q: Why do you continue to serve the homeless of Atlanta?
A: I really love the men and women I meet and if I can just bring a smile or have someone speak to me who never talks, it makes my work that much more rewarding.
Charles Storne and his team of volunteers remain dedicated to changing lives and ending homelessness in Atlanta. We are grateful for their work!