The Salvation Army opens only homeless transitional housing program in Decatur

“We get calls every single day from families that have no place to go,”
Published: Nov. 22, 2021 at 9:48 PM CST
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DECATUR, Ala. (WAFF) - There’s new hope for homeless families in Decatur. The Salvation Army opened its transitional housing program for those in need around the River City.

“There are a lot of homeless families that you would not know that stay in tents in the woods, and sleep on mattresses even in cold weather and rainy situations, they have nowhere else to go,” said The Salvation Army Social Service Coordinator Tiara Turner.

According to the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, there were over 3,000 Alabamians in 2020. Of that number, more than 250 were family households.

“We get calls every single day from families that have no place to go,” said United Way of Morgan County President and CEO Kathleen Ross.

The Salvation Army in Decatur with the help of United Way is tackling the issue. Turner says there is room for up to four homeless families now, but they will expand to nine families in the spring. This is the only program of it’s kind in all of Decatur.

“We work with the families and we help them with budgeting, finding jobs, assistance with daycare, and on the road to living independently. No matter the makeup of your family, you go through the application process and if we have room at the time we house up to ninety days and then based on certain situations it can go beyond ninety days,” said Turner.

Turner says the first family moved in Friday, a single dad with two teenage daughters.

“He was in tears because they had been in this transition of homelessness for awhile. It’s a family of three and just to be able to provide something new for his children was amazing,” said Turner.

Ross says they’ve needed something like this for many years. She says this is a small but significant step.

“Kids are going have homes and adults are going to be able to succeed because of the start that they’re being given here,” said Ross.

Turner says the goal is to end generational poverty.

Homeless families are selected based on their needs. If you would like to apply to the program or donate, contact the Salvation Army in Decatur at (256) 353-2822.

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