Community Empower Shower returns July 23 to Willow Crystal Lake

  • Compassion for Campers volunteer Sue Reckenthaler shows some of the gear available to the unhoused at the June Community Empower Shower event.

    Compassion for Campers volunteer Sue Reckenthaler shows some of the gear available to the unhoused at the June Community Empower Shower event. Courtesy of Compassion for Campers

Updated 7/16/2021 10:50 AM

After a successful launch in June, the Community Empower Shower will become a regular, twice a month event at Willow Crystal Lake, 100 S. Main St., from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. beginning Friday, July 23.

It will continue on the first and third Fridays of each month, Aug. 6 and 20. Compassion for Campers, a program providing camping gear and equipment to the McHenry County unhoused, is proud to participate.


Organizers have included even more groups, agencies, and services for the homeless population.

The Empowerment Shower is a collaborative effort of many organizations and agencies including the Crystal Lake Food Bank, Consumer Credit Counseling, Home of the Sparrow, Live 4 LALI, McHenry County Housing Authority, Pioneer Center, Prairie State Legal Services, Salvation Army, St. Vincent DePaul Society, Veterans Path to Hope, Willow Crystal Lake, and Warp Corps.

Among the many services that will be offered at no cost are: mobile showers; laundry facilities; camping supplies including tent, stove, sleeping bags; toiletries/personal care items; clothing; on-site meal; food; haircuts; transportation; assistance obtaining IDs, birth certificates, Social Security cards; assistance with SSI/SSDI (Disability); assistance with medical coverage, SNAP, TANF; medical access (doctor care, COVID-19 vaccine); debt management services/advocacy; shelter and housing referrals and linkages; domestic violence support; veteran's services; substance use/harm reduction tools and support; and mental health, spiritual, and social support referrals.

Compassion of Campers will continue to also offer supplies at Warp Corps, 114 Benton St. in Woodstock, for daily walk-up availability.

Contributions to support Compassion for Campers including building reserves for emergency hotel rooms during cold and snow emergencies this winter can be made by sending a check made out to Tree of Life UU Congregation, 5603 Bull Valley Road, McHenry, IL 60050 with Compassion for Campers on the memo line.

The donations are placed in a dedicated fund and not used for any other purpose.

Tree of Life also donates all the administrative expenses of the program so 100% of all donations go directly to client assistance. To learn more about Compassion for Campers, visit

Article Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.