Old Jackson County jail remodeled into women's shelter

Old Jackson County jail remodeled into women's shelter

NEWPORT, AR (KAIT) - The old Jackson County Jail in Newport is being remodeled into the White River Women's Shelter.

The old jail house has served the entire county for years. But, with the construction of the new jail, Jackson County had to do something with the building.

According to Bridget Hendrix, executive director of the White River Women's Shelter, having this new space will be very beneficial.

"I've noticed the facilities we have are a little dilapidated," she said. "They need to some work to the point where you can't empty it out to do the renovations because it will take too long."

Hendrix said relocating to the old jail will provide them with a bigger space. She said there's always a need to bring more people into the shelter.

"We have to free up bed space for the shelter because it's a temporary emergency shelter," she said. "We can only house between 12 to 14 men, women, and children a month."

Hendrix also said the facility takes annually admits 115 to 200 people. She said moving into the old jail will allow them to house at least 24 people at one time.

"We can hold 12 on our transitional side and I can house 12 on the domestic violence side," she said.  "And that is not including the animals and extra space that we'll need for children, or homelessness."

The White River Women's Shelter is working to get a $200,000 grant to help renovate the old jail.

Hendrix said they hope to open the renovated facility in a few months.

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