Many people are struggling as this pandemic continues and that includes our homeless people. However, Maureen Cadogan who is the manager of our local homeless shelter has been working to assist them during this time.
Cadogan stated the 14th Street Community Center and the Portsmouth Homeless Shelter have been working to setup a Pandemic Crisis Center as a part of their COVID-19 work. Cadogan is working with the 14th Street Center to ensure the homeless population in Scioto County will have a place to a safe place to stay.
Extra space is needed at this time as they are seeing more people who are homeless and there is not enough space at their regular shelter. They need a place to stay and this temporary shelter will be open for however long this crisis continues.
The 17th Street Armory has been repurposed and has been converted into a temporary homeless shelter, to house at least 30 individuals while observing the social distancing practices. Those seeking shelter should still check in at the eighth Street Homeless Shelter but will be housed at the 17th Street Annex. Cots, linens, towels, and personal hygiene products for each person are being supplied by the homeless shelter. Television, games, and other things to pass time are all provided and Cadogan says that includes three hot meals a day and plenty of snacks and is all set-up to practice the social distancing as they have been directed.
The in the shelter residents areas feature a living area where there are seats and cots and plastic boxes for their personal items and then in their sleeping spaces, there is a distance between beds and the beds set up with pillows and boxes with bedding and such.
Cadogen stated that the Homeless Shelter is seeing a big uptick in their homeless population and this is what they can do to help alleviate this problem. Along with Cadogen was who she said is her sidekick, Caseworker, Diane Coriell. Both ladies said that they are able to do this with grant money and will continue to seek out grants. The ladies stated that they had been contacted by the Ohio Homeless Shelter to see if they could find a place to house more folks during this time because of this uptick. They are renting the 17th Street Armory from the 14th Street Community Center to use during this time.
Cadogan also spoke about a way they are trying to help people here that are about to get evicted from their homes, whether it be because of a layoff or loss of jobs. “We have a program called Rapid Rehousing, anyone who is eligible will get their rent, their first and last month’s rent paid and their deposit, roughly $1,500, and that will help us help them regain their self-sufficiency and independence.”
Cadogan is well-known in the Portsmouth community and is always willing to assist people when there is a time of trouble and now this crisis. She said that we are in a pandemic and we need to help those who are homeless stay safe and protected just like anyone else in our community.
Reach Kimberly Jenkins (740)353-3101 ext. 1928
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