Grant Transforms Kitchen at Turning Point Homeless Shelter

For many families, time together in the evening while cooking and enjoying dinner is incredibly valuable. Unfortunately, some families face obstacles in life and are unable to afford a home. Thanks to a grant of $5,400 in May 2017 from the Women’s Fund at Steuben County Community Foundation, Turning Point was able to upgrade from a small kitchen to a large, open area that families who are without a home can utilize during their stay at the shelter. They transformed a space that had been used for storage and was not functional at all into an area where families can cook together, children can work on homework at the table, and families spend their evenings in conversation.

Shannon Hentzell, Director of Turning Point, said she is grateful for the funding that made this possible. “We are so blessed to have this support from the Women’s Fund. This has made a huge difference for the families that stay here.”

Turning Point currently has 13 residents, including men, women and children. They primarily work with local individuals who recently lost their jobs or are not earning enough to support their families on their own. By working through multiple stages of programming at Turning Point, these individuals learn how to set and reach goals as well as gaining financial, parenting, and nutritional knowledge through classes. Graduates leave the shelter prepared to have meaningful lives as members of the community.

The Women’s Fund was started by two dynamic Steuben County ladies, Lucille Whitman and Wava Aughenbaugh. They make grants to local organizations who are working to improve the lives of women and girls. Currently, there are 10 volunteer members of the Women’s Fund at SCCF. For more information about the Women’s Fund, contact Jacqui Gentile, the SCCF Program Officer, at 260-665-6656 or

Pictured below are Jacqui Gentile (SCCF Program Officer), Shannon Hentzell (Director of Turning Point), Rita Lechleidner (Women’s Fund Member), and Julie Troyer (Women’s Fund Member and Secretary of SCCF Board of Directors).

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