Many homeless people in our area are finding themselves with nowhere to turn. Tomorrow, 15 Place in downtown Mobile will close its doors for good. It’s a day shelter that provides meals, showers, and other resources for the homeless in our community throughout the day. They sleep elsewhere at night, but can wash clothes, receive counseling or housing help, and have a stationary point throughout the day. At least 75 people per day use the facility.
News 5 talked to several homeless people who have depended on the facility. Tracy Williams is a registered nurse who has fallen on hard times. She has relied on 15 Place for the last several months as she tries to get her life together. She says, “It’s a beacon for those of us on the street. They keep us safe. Bad things happen to people who haven’t been to 15 Place. We have heard of violent crime on the street.” Janelle Wilson is homeless and says, “We are trying to hope and pray that we will have somewhere to go during the day…a shelter we can call home.”
Officials with 15 Place say they are closing due to funding issues. Their funding from the Department of Housing and Urban Development has been reduced, and they can’t keep the facility open. They still hope to assist the homeless in finding help getting into permanent housing.