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Local nonprofit that helps people struggling with homelessness robbed

Posted at 6:03 PM, Nov 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-03 19:46:12-05

CINCINNATI — Maslow's Army, a local nonprofit that helps people experiencing homelessness, is trying to replace thousands of dollars in supplies after owners said thieves broke into the organization's trailer.

"When we got down here, we saw that somebody used some power tools and grinded all the locks off, got away with our sound equipment, four industrial large tents, PPE that we've been collecting for the new day center," said Samuel Landis, executive director and co-founder of Maslow's Army.

Landis said the nonprofit is out more than $4,000 in missing equipment and damage to the trailer, which was in Queensgate at the time of the robbery. The organization often stored supplies there for its Sunday outreach program.

"The thing is, these are valuable resources to the people we serve," said Landis. "You're not taking, necessarily, from me. You're taking from the community. You’re taking from our most vulnerable population, and shame on the person that did this."

Landis said he reported the incident to Cincinnati Police and hopes there may be video cameras nearby that could provide insight into who might have broken into the trailer. The loss comes as Maslow's Army has been working to raise money and get approval to convert the old Queensgate Correctional Facility into a day shelter for people experiencing homelessness.

"This is definitely a heartbreaking distraction," said Susan Landis, board chair for the nonprofit. "But at the same time, we're not going to stop trying to help people."

Despite the significant setback, Maslow's Army still plans to open the new day shelter by Thanksgiving, but said it will need support to help replace the stolen supplies. The organization is asking anyone with information about the robbery to come forward and anyone able to help to visit their website.