Director of DARE Center, serving unsheltered people in Lawrence, to retire in August

Share this post or save for later

Loring Henderson, director of the DARE (Drop-in And Rest) Center in Lawrence that serves people experiencing homelessness, is retiring in August, the center’s advisory board announced Monday.

The center, which is staffed by volunteers, offers people who are experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness physical and emotional comfort. Its facilities include showers, laundry, serving as an address for people to receive mail, and more. The center also provides snacks, hygiene items, sleeping bags and tents.


The mail, Henderson said, has been an enormous builder of trust among people who visit the DARE Center. “The other thing I do here, is not to call the police,” he said.

According to the announcement, “In 2022, DARE served a monthly average of 417 (duplicate count) persons with 2,267 volunteer hours and provided 777 loads of laundry, 1,899 showers, and vast numbers of cups of coffee. DARE does not offer case management but helping DARE guests connect to area resources is a major role for the Center.”

Henderson previously served as founding director of the Lawrence Community Shelter from the time it opened in 2005 through 2014. After five years in retirement, he launched the DARE Center, which opened June 3, 2019.

“DARE does not receive city or county funding but depends on the caring and generous in-kind, financial, and volunteer support of the individuals, local churches, and other organizations that have responded to the needs of the poorest in our community,” the announcement stated. Henderson “is deeply grateful for the kindness of the scores of people who have given so much to help. Thank you.”

The board will conduct a search for a replacement director in the upcoming weeks, according to the announcement.

The center, at 944 Kentucky St., operates from 2 to 6 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, according to its website. Learn more at

— Reporters Chansi Long and Mackenzie Clark contributed to this article.

If our local journalism matters to you, please help us keep doing this work.
Don’t miss a beat … Click here to sign up for our email newsletters

Latest Lawrence news:


Previous Article

Lawrence City Commission to consider contract for permanent design of Old West Lawrence traffic devices

Next Article

Lawrence Times wins Best Coverage of Diversity, Best Website and numerous other honors from Kansas Press Association