Homeless day shelter, Bill's Place, closes in 2 months

Published: Oct. 24, 2016 at 6:52 PM CDT
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Everything Odessa Reeves owns, is inside a locker at Bill's Place on Commercial Street.

"This (locker) changed my life because I don't have to stress out about leaving my bag here and there. I have a nice locker for my things to be in," said Reeves.

Reeves is homeless. She considers Bill's Place her safe place. She's one of 80 people who come every day to shower, eat, and do laundry. But now this refuge from the streets is going away. It closes Dec. 16.

"My heart was broken, not just for me but for everybody that has nowhere to go. And it's really hurtful to not have somewhere to go. You really don't understand it unless you've been there," said Reeves.

The day shelter has served homeless people for more than 30 years. The Kitchen, Inc., a longtime homeless shelter, owned the building and Burrell Behavioral Health operated out of it. Now that the building has sold, Burrell's case workers will provide its services differently.

"We'll do that through street outreach through a PATH grant that we're provided through the state and we'll also provide the same amount of community support there and different locations," said Matt Gass, Burrell's director of transitions.

Burrell says it's actively working to find a new location.

"We've looked at several different locations and explored a lot of different options," said Gass. "It's finding a location that's both convenient for individuals who are homeless, being in the right location, and then one that is going to be acceptable for members in the community."

Once Burrell locks down a new location, it hopes to provide life skills along with the services that Bill's Place offered. Reeves just hopes she finds a new safe place before winter.

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