Full of Heart
Harris originally rented a 1,300-square-foot warehouse in Chelsea to store donations but found it too dark and cold. In October 2008, she bought the house on East Street, so Hearts could have a home. (She and her husband live on the outskirts of town.)
Hearts also collects vases and baskets that McDonald fills with donated flowers and delivers to the shut-ins, convalescents, and lonely folks she visits. A "sewing for seniors" program collects fabric and notions to be used for mending and sewing lap blankets and walker and wheelchair bags.
Eric Hendershot, housing coordinator for Michigan Ability Partners, says Harris helps stock the transitional houses MAP runs for returning vets with post-traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse, or other problems. "She's a sweetheart," he says.
A few months ago, Harris received a note with a check enclosed for $100 from a woman whom a vet had helped move. He asked the woman to send Hearts the check because, the note read, "He said you helped him a lot and now there are others who need it more than him. Thanks for what you do!"