An inside look at the new Salvation Army shelter
Fri, 05 Apr 2013 10:00:00 GMT —
The Quincy Salvation Army Emergency Shelter and the Family Services Program are settling into their new building.
It opened just a couple of weeks ago caddy-corner from the Kroc Center.
There's a grand opening celebration planned later in the spring, but KHQA was able to get inside to show you what it looks like.
Mike Leggett's life turned upside down about five years ago. He got divorced and lost his job with the state of Iowa. He tried to work through some emotional and mental problems but just couldn't land on his feet. After bouncing from friend's house to friend's house, he ended up at the Quincy Salvation Army's Emergency Shelter. He was one of the first residents to spend the night in the new building.
"Oh, it's much brighter and stuff. It kind of lifts you up more and you're closer to downtown so you can walk and go to places," Leggett said.
One of the benefits to the new shelter is this large multi-purpose room. Residents can hang out in the lounge, watch a little television. But it also gives the Salvation Army ample space to hold Life Skills classes.
Instructors show residents how to build a resume or deal with stress. They can also have a little fun playing the piano or attending an art class.
"One of the things we started before we left QU was an art program. We saw a lot of participation with that," Shelter Manager Heidi Welty said.
Heidi Welty is the Shelter Manager. She says classes will be so much better here because it's all on one floor. She can't wait to expand that program because she sees how art changes lives.
On the other side of the building is Family Services ... a bread line, food pantry and a full sized kitchen. There's also a lot more space to store donations, including these new deep freezers. Growing pains from the move from the old shelter exist ... like waiting for furniture on back order.
The biggest benefit to the new building?
"Definitely proximity to where they need to be throughout the day. There are services at the Kroc we can utilize. The building itself is so nice. It's beautiful. The atmosphere in here is totally different.
Which will make Mike Leggett sad when he leaves. He recently qualified for disability and will move out of the shelter very soon.
"Very excited. I mean, I like it here ... a lot, but I'm excited to get back on my own," Leggett said.
Major Andy Miller feels the same way about this new building.
"There's something to say it's nice to be home, even if home is new," Major Miller said.
The grand opening for the new building is planned for May 30th.