Hope House Mission has started a shelter and expansion campaign to fund the move of the homeless shelter from South Main Street to Grove Street.
The homeless shelter has secured $9 million of the $10 million project and hopes to raise the remaining money through the campaign, said Tim Williams, executive director of operations at Hope House.
So far, Williams said, he has heard “good reports” from potential donors so he expects the necessary funds to be raised.
Ground will be broken during a ceremony at 11 a.m. Aug. 30 on Grove Street, Williams said. The plan is to have the project complete by December 2019 when Hope House needs to vacate its building at 34 S. Main St. since it has been purchased, he said.
The new 40,000 square foot building will include residential spaces, administration, counseling and a medical room where a nurse will be available every day and a doctor will visit once a week.
Williams said the existing center lacks the space and amenities to support the growing number of homeless residents in the city.
He said the move will allow Hope House to serve more individuals and serve them better with new facilities designed to promote “life transformation.” The new facility will have 50 emergency shelter beds, increasing the capacity to serve the community by 10 beds. In addition, Hope House will be increasing its permanent supportive housing rooms by 20. These rooms provide residents a home with structure, support and help to people it serves in its emergency shelter, Williams said.
Some homeless men, Williams said, are “challenged” living on own, but they “thrive in a safe and accountable environment.” While living in the Hope House apartments, those residents will receive counseling, case management and assistance with job placement, he said.
The focus will be on the chronically homeless, those who have suffered through decades of addiction and mental disabilities, he said.
“We want to transform lives,” Williams said. “Instead of them draining resources we want them giving back.”
Those who are homeless require clinical and spiritual guidance, said Williams.
“With their level of struggle, there is no hope for them,” he said. “But once God intervenes and they embrace Him, that’s their hope for sure. That’s when you see a transformed life.”