HAZLETON -- Hazleton's homeless are getting a special gift this holiday season. Joe Maddon, Chicago Cub manager and Hazleton native, and his nonprofit Respect 90 teamed with Catholic Social Services to help the city's homeless.
Respect 90 is named after the distance between home plate and first base and also represents the idea that respect begins at home. The organization has worked with homeless individuals in Tampa, Chicago, and Hazleton.
“I think too many times, people see these folks as being invisible and we don't,” said Maddon.
Today's gift to the homeless was a Citypak backpack. Citypak is a nonprofit that designs backpacks specifically for the homeless. More than 100 bags were given to Catholic Social Services to distribute.
Currently, workers are renovating the Catholic Social Services building to host a homeless shelter.
“One part of the building is actually going to be a permanent location for the homeless shelter and then in another part of the building, which actually the shelter feeding right into this, will be transitional living services for young adults,” said Catholic Social Services Director Neil Oberto.
The hope is for the renovations to be completed this spring so those in need in Hazleton will have a place to call home.