Showers and a barbershop will also be installed in the “Pope Francis’ Laundry" facility.
When someone lives on the streets, it can be a difficult feat to keep clothes clean. A fresh set of threads, however, can help one feel renewed and more confident when seeking out potential opportunities to better their situation. It’s for this reason the Catholic Church recently opened an establishment for the homeless population in Rome.
At “Pope Francis’ Laundry,” the poor and homeless in the city can do their laundry for free. The establishment opened its doors on Monday and has six washing machines, dryers and clothing irons for patrons to use. All appliances were donated by the Michigan-based company Whirlpool. The free detergent and cleaners are being provided by Proctor and Gamble.
The Italian daily La Stampa reports that the initiative was inspired by Pope Francis’ call to “give concrete form to charity” at the end of the Jubilee Year of Mercy. Located inside an old hospital complex in Rome’s Trastevere neighborhood, officials say they are looking forward to installing showers and a barbershop within the facilities. Eventually, “Pope Francis’ Laundry” will provide a safe haven full of valuable, free resources to the poor.
Archbishop, Konrad Krajewski, who was charged by Pope Francis with handing out alms, or charity, to the poor, commented:
“Here is a concrete sign wanted by the office of Papal Charities: a place and a service to give concrete form to charity to restore dignity to so many people who are our brothers and sisters and who are called, with us, to build a city we can trust. One of the greatest difficulties for those who live on the streets, along with that of finding food, a place to spend the night and public baths, is to wash and dry the clothes they wear, in many cases the only ones they own.”
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