Through the vision of Colleen Knauf, the foundress of Saint's Place, a dream definitely became a reality. Nineteen years ago, Colleen volunteered through her Church, St. Louis, to assist a Somalian family. She was shocked at how little the family had and how much they needed. At that moment Saint's Place took shape.
Colleen began to ask for donations to help the refugees in the Rochester area. The number of volunteers grew but so did the number of newly arriving refugees. After several different locations, Colleen was given the house at 46 South Main Street to run the Ministry of Saint's Place.
At that point in time, Colleen and her band of volunteers were assisting well over 300 refugees from all over the world.
Five years ago, St. John of Rochester donated five classrooms to Saint's Place. It is there that we house our Clothing Closet, Sorting Room and Household set up operations.
46 South Main Street
Pittsford, NY 14534
Open Monday-Thursday 8:30 - 4:00
The Christmas season was joyous at Saint's Place and all of us were looking forward to a most exciting New Year. Little did we realize the daunting challenge which was going to be given to us. With the Executive Order from President Trump, a vast numbers of refugees hoping, and planning to come to the United States was stopped. We will continue to help refugees. Our focus has turned to helping several thousand refugees already settled in Rochester. Many of them still need furniture, household items and clothing. Plans are already implemented. We will be delivering furniture to homes and refugees will be coming to our Clothing Closet to obtain more needed clothing.
With the very fluid situation about the status of refugees arriving in the Unites States, Saint's Place will continue to be ready. We have and will continue to adjust our schedules, be creative about space to store items, and pray that the Lord will keep the refugees safe while they wait to restart their lives here in the United States.
It is heartwarming and so gratifying to witness the amount of donations which have come pouring into Saint's Place. A group of sixth graders took it upon themselves to do a toiletry drive for several refugee families; more people have come forward to volunteer, either by tutoring or working at our Clothing Closet. There is so much goodness out there and we at Saint's Place are blessed to witness it every day.
Please keep Saint's Place in your prayers and thoughts. Our needs never stop: blankets, towels, can openers, rice cookers, warm men's boots, pots and pans, and the list goes on...
Saint's Place has three specific programs which assist newly arrived legal refugees in the Rochester area. We help over 1250 refugees on a yearly basis. They arrive with virtually the shirt on their backs and devastating memories of war, famine or ethnic cleansing. They have left their country and families in hope of finding a better life in the United States.
We provide the refugees with clothing against the harsh winters of Rochester as well as seasonal clothing located at St. John of Rochester. Each refugee is personally assisted by a volunteer. Dignity is the operative word at Saint's Place.
We provide household setups for the refugees' apartments. Each refugee receives a new bed, frame, pillow and bedding together with all of the other necessary household items to transform a place into their home. Each year we set up over 250-300 apartments.
We conduct tutorial programs at The Greek Orthodox Church of the Holy Spirit and Guardian Angel Church. Adults learn to speak English and are educated on how to apply for jobs, citizenship exams, etc. School age children receive help with their homework. We tutor over 100 refugees a week.