A number of factors can cause someone to experience homelessness. The most common situations include: struggles with mental and physical health, substance abuse, low income, lack of affordable housing, and/or lack of community. Any of these reasons —sometimes all of these reasons—contribute to why someone would come to KARM.

The best way to care for the homeless is to connect with service providers in the Knox area. East Tennessee has a host of ministries and social service agencies that provide opportunities to volunteer and serve the homeless. You can certainly find a service opportunity that uses your gifts and fits your availability! To learn more about volunteering at KARM, email volunteer@karm.org.

The best approach is not to give money but, instead, to direct people to resources that can meet their needs. However, if you feel the Holy Spirit directing you to give, by all means, give to that person. Something each person you encounter could use is a single day bus pass, which would give them the ability to reach services they need (food, shelter, etc.).

A Blessing Bag needs to have:

New pair of socks
Soap (bar or body wash)
Shampoo (travel size)
Conditioner (travel size)
Disposable razor
Pocket-sized tissue pack
Pack of crackers (any flavor)
Candy and/or gum
Feminine hygiene products

Blessing Bags can also include:

Baby wipes/clean wipes
Lip balm
Gift card to fast food restaurant
KAT one-day bus pass
Bug spray (in warm months)
Hand warmers (in cold months)
Gloves and/or hat (in cold months)
Bottled water


Hand sanitizer