As two months remain for the two new emergency shelters in Jamestown to provide housing for the homeless, a group working on homelessness is looking at what’s next.
A group of faith-based organizations, social service groups, and other non-profits has been coordinated by Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist to discuss the issue of homelessness in the city.
At an meeting on March 1, the Joy Fellowship and Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County provided an update on how their emergency shelters have been operating. Both facilities are only open during Code Blue situations, where the overnight temperature drops below 32 degrees.
MHA Executive Director Steven Cobb said he feels very positive about how things have gone with the shelters, “Today we have celebrated some of the successes we’ve had in providing housing with our Code Blue shelters in Jamestown, both at the MHA and Joy Fellowship. They’ve been very successful. And I think the other positive thing I leave here with is that there is a lot of support in the community to continue this and figure out what comes next.”
Cobb said there was a negative realization over the last couple months, “The folks we are serving in these shelters have enormous needs and at this point in the community we might not have all the resources we need to have in place to foster continued success for the folks in our community who are experiencing homelessness.”
MHA Project Manager Sean Jones said since January 6, there have been 142 individuals who have stayed at the MHA shelter.
Both facilities said they are in need for food donations, especially frozen meals, fresh fruit, yogurt, and milk. They also said donations of sturdy shoes and backpacks for adults are needed.
For more information about donations, contact Joy Fellowship at 716-484-1542 and the MHA at 716-661-9044.