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New homeless shelter to help women and children in Baldwin County

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An estimated three hundred school-age children are homeless right now in Baldwin County. The new Baldwin Family village is a thirteen-unit facility for transitional housing and homeless support services. The idea for the shelter started in January of last year. That’s when Fairhope Methodist Church saw a growing problem of homelessness in Baldwin County. The village is operated by the Dumas Wesley Community Center in Mobile. Executive director Kate Carver says a one and a half million dollar fundraiser made it all happen

“Over the last few years, about 20 to 25% of our clients are from Baldwin County. There wasn't a service for women and children who needed long-term housing or transitional housing for folks who were experiencing homelessness,” said Carver.

The Baldwin Family Village is modeled after the Sybil Smith Family Village, a successful transitional housing program, also operated by Dumas. The push for dollars began when community groups and religious organizations realized temporary homeless help wasn’t working. Pastor Darren McClellan of Fairhope United Methodist Church is one of the leaders in the project.

When we open our eyes to the reality of those needs within us, we recognize that when we know better, we can do better,” said McClellan.

Lynn Oldshue is a reporter for Alabama Public Radio.
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