Louisville homeless will soon have access to ‘Hope Village’
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Louisville Metro will soon open its own homeless camp, following the lead of other cities. The plan is to provide a safe outdoor space for a portion of the people who are currently living on city streets, where they can get food and shelter.
The city has spent approximately $3 million to buy the property on East College Street that was previously owned by the Archdiocese of Louisville. Half of that money will be used to run a village of 45 insulated tents called The Hope Village.
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The camp will offer both security and services to the homeless.
“Resources that will include, that would take place here, would be securing their belongings, access to food, showers, toilets, and importantly services to help them address the issues that might be keeping them from being in permanent housing,” Metro Resilience and Community Services Director Tameka Laird said.
The Hope Buss, a local nonprofit, will be in charge of day-to-day operations at The Hope Village.
“I promise you, this might be the first Hope Village,” The Hope Buss Executive Director Stachelle Bussey said, “but if we work together as a community, it will not be the last.”
Despite the city’s periodic clearing of homeless encampments, clusters of tents remain downtown and in the surrounding areas.
In January 2021, Louisville’s unsheltered street population topped 250. That problem will not be solved by the Hope Village plan, which calls for only 45 tents.
”Quite frankly, I’m not sure what huge difference people will see instantaneously on the street,” Louisville Metro Homeless Services Director Susan Buchino said.
Buchino said even if a person is lucky enough to land a place in The Hope Village, transitioning to a life off the street will take time. It may even include long journeys through mental health care and rehabilitation before they find work and housing.
The Hope Village is expected to open in February.
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