"Safe Room" is the latest shelter to combat homelessness

Back the Blue Safe room
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

(KAIT) - Several organizations in Northeast Arkansas work to combat the problem of homelessness in the region.

The latest addition is the "Safe Room" funded by Pink Ink and Back the Blue in Jonesboro.

A few people have already used the safe room since it opened this month.

Jeremy Biggs is the director at Mission Outreach in Paragould. He said homelessness is a big issue in Northeast Arkansas.

"Many do not think homelessness is prevalent in our area because they do not see it every day," Biggs said.

However, according to an annual homeless count, there are plenty of people without a stable home.

"In one given night there are at least 140 homeless people in Craighead, Greene, and Poinsett counties," Biggs said.

That number has increased over the past year.

"It was an increase from 2014, in part because there was a better effort and volunteers who took part and helped us in this endeavor.  but it also increased because we believe there are more homeless people," Biggs said.

Biggs said Mission Outreach is here to help anyone in Northeast Arkansas facing homelessness and they also help other organizations with the same goal.

"We serve all of Northeast Arkansas so our doors are open to anybody who is facing homelessness any day and we work closely with many organizations in our area that fight the same battle," Biggs said.

Biggs said any group or individual trying to help this problem in the community is a great help.

"Any outreach that is done by any individual or any example of love that they show to another individual facing a hard time is always welcome and always makes a difference in the lives of a homeless individual," Biggs said. "You do not know how important your actions are to those people."

Biggs said if anyone wants to help they can reach out to local people or other shelters like Mission Outreach or the Safe Room.

"If you want to be involved, speak up and someone will let you in the door and put you to work," Biggs said.

He said this is a situation that can happen to anyone so it is important for the community help one another.

"Homelessness can happen to anybody at any time," Biggs said.

Copyright 2016 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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