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GI homeless shelter expands to help more people

Published: Mar. 31, 2021 at 8:32 PM CDT
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GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - Crossroads Mission Avenue has been busier than ever during the pandemic and decided to expand its facilities in Grand Island.

In 2020, Crossroads Mission Avenue homeless Shelter served more than 800 people.

“We’ve seen a steady increase and the need for help and continue to see that, not only just housing, it’s all our services we offer are being utilized,” said Crossroads Resource Development Director Jeffrey Kingsley.

The homeless shelter is now expanding to help serve more people comfortably during this time.

“We’re hoping to get done as soon as we can,” Kingsley said. “I definitely think it’s going to have an impact, as far as, the pandemic because we don’t know how long that’s going to continue to last and effect the communities.”

They’ve been renovating their South Locust Street location for some time now, but Federal Home Loan Bank donated a million dollars so they can get started on their West 9th Street location.

“About May 1st, April or May we’ll be under construction to create a homeless shelter that will serve men long-term in Grand Island,” said Crossroads Executive Director Daniel Buller.

They hope to add more rooms, a commercial kitchen, make their facilities handicap accessible, among other upgrades. They also have a small space in Grand Island for clothing recycling at the moment, but later in the year they hope to transform it into a thrift store.

“Thrift stores are important to Crossroads because people want to donate to help the homeless, that gives a venue where we can store stuff plus whatever we sell in thrift stores can help support the mission, so that it’s a sustainable work,” Buller said.

Recently Crossroads has had a few people test positive with COVID-19, and now they’re having to isolate them at the facility. This has been hard to do in a small space throughout the pandemic.

“We had to work through some struggles like making sure people had a place to isolate until we knew whether they were sick or not sick, keeping everybody safe that was currently in shelter, keeping our staff healthy, but the Lord has provided for all of our needs,” Buller said.

The expansion will not only help them serve more people but will also give more room to isolate the sick.

Crossroads Mission Avenue has been helping the homeless for 39 years. Their men’s shelter in Grand Island is there to help people in need. Women are also welcome to use their services at their Kearney and Hastings locations. For more information visit their website.

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