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Bus With A Mission Provides Soup And Services

A new bus service recently started in Central Ohio, but this one is not your typical ride.  It's a bus with a mission.

The following is an automated transcript of the above interview, please excuse all errors in the text.

Debbie Holmes: A new bus service recently started in central Ohio, but this one is not your typical ride. It's a bus with a mission. Here to explain Metro Relief Columbus is Amy Ramsey, Metro's executive director. Thanks for joining me.

Amy Ramsey: Thank you. We are a service team that travels to the needy. And we go together as a team. There's a number of churches involved. We are faith based but we have probably about six or seven churches that have now collaborated with us.

DH: What exactly are you offering for services then?

AR: We provide food as a avenue, or it's our first avenue of communicating with those that we are serving. So we provide a nutritious soup and also we offer a drink to serve. And then in addition while we're serving with the soup we provide hygiene and socks. We provide services for the homeless in under-served in the Columbus and surrounding areas.

DH: And I also understand that you would be also helping pinpoint services that people can go for themselves to try to reach out to some other services then that you would provide information about that.

AR: Yes we have five core principles with Metro Relief and one of those principles is our resources. We use resources to provide the people that we're meeting with organizations that we're collaborating with and giving them an opportunity to go to touch base with those services.

DH: What kind of services are we talking about?

AR: It depends on their needs so if an individual is struggling with an addiction, we have some services connections with helping them go to centers or area locations to help with their addiction needs and helping them to become clean.

DH: And what other things are available?

AR: On a typical outreach we are serving the food and then we're also building relationships. Relationships are very key to our organization.

We want to establish our relationship with our guests and help direct them to the right place and and which they have the needs for. So we do that through a biblical foundation. So we're offering them, we invite them to come on the bus. And the first part of our bus we call the war room where we establish that connection with the person and see what their needs are.

We offer our hygiene kit and we offer some socks. And then we talk. And we listen. And just that is very key, listening to what their situation is and just having a friend for a couple hours to talk through their situation and help support them in that way.

DH: How many people do you think will be served then by your bus on a weekly basis?

AR: On a weekly basis, one outreach we've had as many as one hundred fifty people come to our bus.

DH: So where exactly will the bus be traveling then in the Columbus area?

AR: Right now we're traveling to grub street. We have a parking lot that is right outside of Holy Family. Our goal is to eventually travel to other areas of need that right now we're starting off there was an area that we can develop our processes and just really make sure that our system is well organized.

DH: I understand that that's also where a lot of folks congregate. There's a mission there or there's a food pantry there, and a lot of people go there for food every day.

AR: They offer food services Monday through Friday, and on Saturday they were there. So it's just it's an additional day to help support those that may not have a meal or a place to get a meal for on a Saturday.

DH: Well thanks for joining me, I've been talking to Amy Ramsey, head of Metro Relief Columbus, a new bus service that will be traveling on Columbus streets to serve those in need.

AR: Thank you.

Debbie Holmes began her career in broadcasting in Columbus after graduating from The Ohio State University. She left the Buckeye state to pursue a career in television news and worked as a reporter and anchor in Moline, Illinois and Memphis, Tennessee.