Volunteer Aims to Provide Dignity and Joy to Clients

Mike Binkow, a volunteer with our mobile shower unit, focuses on providing care—and respect—to those who visit.

“The most humbling thing about volunteering with the shower unit is the personal connection you make with the people you meet,” Mike said. “You realize these are real people in real tough situations. They are our brother, sister, father, mother, kids, neighbor, and friends. Though they are currently struggling, they are human beings who need our support.”

We asked Mike what he’s learned working with people experiencing homelessness. He said he’s “learned to humanize each individual by looking people in the eye and offering a friendly greeting. You really get to see the difference that just that interaction can make with someone—their head is lifted, their walk changes. Providing a moment of dignity and joy changes the perspective on everything.”

Recently, Mike was honored at the Valley Alliance of Neighborhood Council’s 15th anniversary event for his work with the Mission’s mobile shower unit.

The mobile shower unit not only provides showers, but a warm meal, haircut, a closet from which to pick out clothes, and access to a case manager.