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Homeless Angels need help caring for baby girl born in shelter

The baby came a month early, leaving the shelter “feverishly running around” to make sure they were prepared for her arrival.
Published: Oct. 30, 2020 at 5:13 PM EDT
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OWOSSO, Mich. (WJRT) - (10/30/2020) - Shiawassee County’s only homeless shelter is meeting the need just in time.

An expectant mother walked into Homeless Angels in Owosso last week, to make sure her daughter would have a home by the time she was born.

“God’s timing is everything,” Director Shelly Ochodnicky said.

Baby Aviana was born just 5 days later, one month early.

Ochodnicky is now asking for the community’s help in getting the newborn what she needs.

“She did not have anything!” she said.

At 9:30 p.m. Wednesday, little Aviana came into the world weighing just 5 lbs. 1 oz.

“So, we have been feverishly running around and trying to prepare and get things ready,” Ochodnicky explained.

She said Aviana’s Mom and almost 2-year-old big sister walked through their doors last Friday. They were homeless and needed help finding stability.

“With the programs and the agencies that we work with so closely, we have a lot of resources that we know we’re going to be able to help her with. And it was just a great fit,” Ochodnicky shared. “And, we had one family room left open. So we went ahead and decided to move her in and get started.”

Ochodnicky is grateful that the timing couldn’t have been more perfect.

They knew the Mom’s due date was approaching. Originally, Aviana’s family expected her one month from now on November 29th. Instead, she came early.

“Luckily I mean, our community is awesome. So we’re working some things out and trying to get everything gathered up and ready,” Ochodnicky said.

Homeless Angels runs solely on donations from the community. Since posting about Aviana’s arrival on Facebook, Ochodnicky said they received preemie diapers and a bassinet. She was also able to run to the store to get her some clothes.

“The gift cards are really helpful -- the $25 gift cards we’ve had dropped off or bigger from Meijer; because as these things arise, these needs arise, sometimes we got to go get them right now,” she explained.

The shelter reports 1 in 30 kids are homeless. It’s a statistic they’re seeing as the coronavirus pandemic continues to impact families.

Ochodnicky shared they’re also helping out another mom of two right now.

With the holidays approaching, she knows this won’t be the last family in need.

“People are, you know, kind of wondering what is coming for the next few months or a year, financially. So, it will be interesting; because obviously, this is unprecedented times, so we have a lot going on but we’re hopeful,” Ochodnicky added.

If you’d like to help Aviana’s family, click here to donate online or Ochodnicky said any donations can be dropped off or mailed to Homeless Angels 218 N Park Street, Owosso, Michigan 48867.

Another way to help the shelter is by volunteering. With only 3 paid positions, Ochodnicky said the shelter couldn’t run without the volunteers.

If you’d like to sign up to help, a one-hour training is coming up November 7th.

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