Project Uplift bag

The Danville Public Library will be giving away backpacks of supplies and resources for displaced persons through Project Uplift on Monday, which will be curbside pickup this year.

DANVILLE — It’s been five years since the Danville Public Library started Project Uplift.

Project Uplift was designed to connect homeless, or home insecure, persons and families and those who love them with information and resources within the Danville community.

This year’s event on Monday at the library, 319 N. Vermilion St., Danville, will look different due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Normally organizations have tables outside and inside the library’s first floor meeting room to provide items and information. There were about 20 agencies represented last year.

Those attending were given a gift bag of items, and they could eat a meal.

This year, the library has 120 bags to give away, according to Johnson Flanagan, public services manager with the library.

“Anyone who would like a bag can show up at the curbside doors of the library (the green double doors facing Vermilion Street) and request a bag for each person they have present with them,” according to Johnson.

Library hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Friday.

Johnson says if someone really needs the bag and is worried their situation will not allow them to get to the library easily, they can call the library’s Outreach Department and they will be happy to keep a bag back for that person until they could come pick it up. The Outreach Department’s phone number is (217) 477-5227.

“When the bags are given out, staff will also give each person a current list of community resources organized by categories. These categories range anywhere from shelters to after school programs to simply: ‘where do I start?’ We will be giving out the bags on a first-come, first-serve basis,” Johnson said.

Everything in the bags was donated through a grant from the Danville Library Foundation.

Each backpack has a small plastic bag of basic toiletry supplies, a cloth face mask, hat, gloves, scarf and flier of community resources.

Johnson said they’re excited to get the bags and the community resource fliers into the hands of those who really need them.

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